Local love story carries on

The greatest love story I know is the one between my husband and myself.

When we first met it was in the Ladysmith Inn Pub. I was in town from Nanaimo visiting friends. There was some really good live music and I saw this nice looking fellow sitting at the bar. So I told my friend Mugsy that I was going to ask him to dance and she said “Wait Arlene, I want to tell you about him.” Being well into the sauce by then I said “I’m only going to dance with him” and away I went. I asked the fellow if he danced or just sat there looking dumb. He said he liked to dance so I hauled him on the dance floor and spent most of the evening dancing with him. Finally, Mugsy got me to sit long enough to tell me about him. She said he worked with her hubby Doug and that a couple of years before, his wife had passed away in his arms and he had just kept to himself after that. I thought that was so sad, but was relieved she hadn’t told me he still had a wife. So I asked him over to our table and he joined us. Later, I gave him my phone number in case he needed a dance partner again.

Two weeks went by and I thought maybe he didn’t like my technique and I wasn’t going to hear from him. Finally one afternoon he called and we started dating. When he told me he had six kids at home I thought he was fooling. But one day he took me to meet them, and with all their cousins, too. It took about three months to figure out which six were his. What a wonderful man he turned out to be. He taught me that some parents do love their children and tell them out loud several times a day, and they would say it back to him and to each other. This is something I had never heard in my childhood.

The strangest part was that when I was younger, I had told my dad that I wanted six kids some day, and then later found out I couldn’t have any. When Danny asked me to marry him, I told him I wanted him to ask the kids first because I didn’t want to interfere with the sorrow they felt at losing their mom. Funny guy turns around in the car and asks them right then and I had meant for him to ask them in private, but anyway they got excited and said yes. We had 26 beautiful years together — always together.

Now my Danny has passed away and I have never felt such a loss. If it wasn’t for those six wonderful kids (one of whom passed away a few months before his dad) I would not be able to go on. They may not be mine by birth, but they are mine by heart.

I wish everyone could have the love I have had from Danny and his children, and those of you who knew him will agree he was a gentle, kind, loving teddy bear.

Thank you Danny for sharing so much love with me. Until we meet again my love, may God hold you in the palm of his hand. Always loved, always missed.

— Your loving wife Arlene Daniels.

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