Happy Anniversary, Mike and Paulette!


This last week, Paulette and her hubby Mike celebrated their anniversary. Most anniversaries are special, but theirs is just a little bit extra special.

Mike and Paulette met during Paulette’s first year of college. Mike, a young Marine, was out with two fellow Marines, all trying to meet girls (of course)! The three men serendipitously arrived at the dorm where Paulette was visiting with friends, and destiny took over. Paulette spent most of that evening talking with… not Mike. But by the end of the evening, Mike persevered, asking for (and receiving) Paulette’s phone number. It would only take him several weeks to muster the courage to actually call her!

But then destiny really did take over. After dating for six weeks, Mike (who would soon be deployed overseas) asked Paulette to marry him. To which she replied, “I’ll have to think about it!” And indeed, Paulette, 19 years old at the time, would marry Mike 6 weeks later.



In Paulette’s office, a photo from the early days.


They would only be married for 6 weeks when Mike would be deployed overseas. Just before he left, Mike brought Paulette a vase and told her that she would be receiving something special. That next Saturday, and every Saturday that followed, Paulette received a single rose for her vase, a token of love from her husband nearly half a world away. Mike was first deployed in Japan, and would also be sent with the first wave of troops to arrive in Vietnam. They wrote back and forth daily, sent recorded tapes to each other, and no doubt missed each other dearly.

Mike returned to the US, and the first Christmas tree they shared as a married couple was decorated with the bows that had come from each of the roses. Paulette had saved them.

It was a chance encounter that easily could not have happened, but it did. Now each year on their anniversary, Mike sends Paulette a red rose for every year they’ve been married with one pink rose to begin the next year. What a guy!!




Happy Anniversary, you two! It’s clear you share a love that is very, very special!


Michelle Gustafson

Paper Wishes Blog

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46 Responses to “Happy Anniversary, Mike and Paulette!”

  1. Diane Cullison says:

    Happy Anniversary! Such a sweet story….thank you for sharing.

  2. Loretta Holzinger says:

    What a wonderful story and so sweet that Mike sent a rose every week. Happy Anniversary!

  3. Valerie Breingan says:

    Happy Anniversary to you both.That’s truly one of the most beautiful stories I’ve ever read..HUGE CONGRATS

  4. Toni McKelley says:

    OH MY, what a wonderful story. My husband and I celebrated our 31st on 8/25. August is a perfect time for a wedding. So close to my heart. Many good wishes and thank you for sharing this with all the PW fans!

  5. Pat Smith says:

    Sincere congratulations on years of an obviously great partnership, wonderful in so many ways! Happy Anniversary!

  6. angelina says:

    Happy Anniversary, and may the both of you have many more.

  7. Barbara Merdian says:

    Such a lovely LOVE story! Happy Anniversary and may you celebrate many more.

    PS love your website

  8. Kathy says:

    Happy Anniversary to you both.

  9. Trish says:

    Happy Anniversary Mike and Paulette!!! You have a very special and touching story!! Congratulations on another year together and celebrating another year of love!!!
    Best wishes

  10. Jessica says:

    Your love is indeed sweet and very strong. Thanks for allowing us to know and share in your story. Happy Anniversary y’all! (How many years has it been Michelle?)
    Thanks, Jess

    • Michelle Gustafson says:

      Hi Jessica! Paulette says, “We just celebrated our 51st anniversary, but it REALLY only seems like 20!” 🙂

  11. Happy Anniversary you too and many more to come.

  12. Earlene Green says:

    Congratulations to the both of you and what a sweet sweet story of your life. My prayer is for many more anniversaries and many more roses for you.

  13. Louise says:

    How beautiful! Happy anniversary!

  14. Leticia SEaman says:


  15. Nancy A. Huck says:

    Happy Anniversary Paulette and Mike. I love the story how you met. Hope you two have many more anniversaries.

  16. Nancy says:

    Oh, that’s just too sweet! Congratulations on your anniversary, Paulette and Mike, with love and best wishes for many, many more happy years together. God bless! 🙂

  17. Patti Jo says:

    Mike & Paulette,
    I love to hear how married people met. I bet you still hold hands. May there be many more years to come. Bless you both.

  18. Faye Thompson says:

    Happy Anniversary, Paulette and Mike. What a wonderful story and tradition. Yes, you are both fortunate.

  19. Kim says:

    Happy Anniversary to a couple who have truly been blessed with finding each other. Wishing you both many more beautiful years together.

  20. Kerry says:

    Happy Anniversary Mike and Paulette, love the story. I love how God intervenes to bring couples together. Loved your story. My husband, Brad and I, just celebrated our 21st anniversary on the 26th of August. May you have many more years of happiness and celebration!!

  21. Susan Fahrney says:

    Hope you two will continue to bloom with love, Happy Anniversary and many more.

  22. Janet says:

    Beautiful love history and future. Congrats to both of you, and many more to come.

  23. Christina D says:

    So sweet! A belated Happy Anniversary to Paulette and Mike, may you have many more years of happiness!!

  24. Suzanne S says:

    Happy Anniversary, Mike & Paulette! What a beautiful story you have to share. I love the roses sent every Saturday after deployment, and the tradition of giving them each anniversary with one pink one for the coming year. May you have so many more years of happiness that your home overflows with those roses!

  25. Ruth Lynch says:

    Such a beautiful love story. Happy anniversary Mike and Paulette and may your marriage be Blessed with many many more happy memories and roses.

  26. Shirley White says:

    Sounds like the makings of a movie…..Happy, Happy. Many more. Shirley

  27. Penny Krueger says:

    Wonderful love story…Thank you for sharing it with us. Wishing you many more happy years together…

  28. Elise Mungovan says:

    Happy Anniversary, Mike and Paulette! That was a beautiful story.
    I couldn’t believe how close the beginning of your chance meeting resembled mine. I met Bill at a school dance. I went to an all girl’s school and we did the inviting. Bill was with a friend of mine from school and I was with a guy I knew. There were a number of us going to a house party afterwards, where Bill asked me to dance. After that first night I knew I would someday marry him. He was a Marine stationed at Camp LeJeune. We wrote to each other after that and when it was time to re-up in the Marines, he decided to get out. I continued at college and we dated until I graduated. We married that summer. 55 years ago this August 13th. We have 4 children and 10 grandchildren. Bill worked for Xerox and is now retired and we live in Texas. Looking forward to so many more years with him and wishing the same for you and Mike.

  29. Kathy Meyers says:

    Happy Anniversary, and hope you have many more.

  30. Lennie H. says:

    Sincerest congratulations you two. Loved the story and may you have many more years together to celebrate.

  31. Vicki says:

    What a lovely story. Have a wonderful rest of your anniversaries!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  32. Rose says:

    Those service men work really fast. My husband, who was in the Air Force, asked me to marry him one week after our first date. I also needed time to think it over. I took another week. We just celebrated our 56th anniversary last week. Happy Anniversary Mike and Paulette.

  33. Karen adams says:

    Happy Anniversary to Mike and Paulette.Thirty two years are a blessing, may you have many more with husband. My husband and I are coming up on our 34.Have a beautiful and wonderful day.

  34. Bonnie says:

    Happy Anniversary, you both will be happy

  35. Carline Marsh says:

    You have a special love. Reminds mef my husband and I until I lost him six years ago.Hold each other tightand have many, many years ahead.

    Carline iun Arizona

  36. Diana says:

    What an awesome story Mike and Paulette. Happy Anniversary. Hope you have many more together.

  37. Carolyn says:

    I loved the story, so romantic! The perfect couple! Hope there are many, many more roses in the future!!!

  38. Marguerite says:

    Happy Anniversary Paulette and Mike. Thank you for sharing the lovely story of your meeting, courting, marrying, and loving all these years. Paulette, your youthful smile and eyes are very much the same as when you were younger in that picture. God Bless You Both.

  39. Tina Van Eick says:

    That is such a sweet story. Happy belated anniversary. May you be blessed with many more happy years to come.

  40. That is a wonderful story! Wishing you many more happy years together, Mike and Paulette. <3

  41. Cynthia S says:

    What a love story. Congratulations to both, with wishes for many more years together.

  42. Addie says:

    How much more than a romantic story is this! To marry so young and stay married takes unbelievable patience, effort, ability to see the trugh below the surface of things. Congratulations, both of you, on achieving the almost impossible. And kudos for having such good judgement so young!

  43. Pauline Parker says:

    Congratulations to you both. Like you my love and I have celebrated a long marriage (49 years for us) and can’t quite believe that is has gone so very quickly. He often says that he asked me to grow old with him, but didn’t realise it would happen so quickly!! Sending best wishes from New Zealand

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