‘I took one look and I was hooked’; Lorraine and Buck Venables to mark 63rd anniversary a month after Valentine’s Day

By on February 14, 2018

Buck Venables plants a kiss on his wife Lorraine. She says the instant she set eyes on him as he got onto a bus, she knew the good-looking Buck would be her future husband. The Venables are one of this town’s loving couples who will be celebrating Valentine’s Day on Wednesday. They’ll also mark their 63rd anniversary on March 11. (Keith Lacey photo)

When she first laid eyes on him as a teenager, Lorraine Venables knew the good-looking guy who had just walked on the bus would be her future husband.

“I was riding the bus going to air cadets with my girlfriend named Bev Kornic,” she said smiling. “As soon as he walked on the bus, I took one look at him and I told my girlfriend that he was going to be the guy I was going to marry.

“It was his eyes. I took one look and I was hooked.”

Buck Venables was that good looking young guy and he quickly found out Lorraine was not only in air cadet training, but she also attended the same high school in North Vancouver.

The more he got to know Lorraine, the more attracted he was and he eventually asked her on a date to attend the Pacific National Exhibition during the summer of 1954.

They continued to date, fell in love and were married a few months later on March 11, 1955.

Buck and Lorraine Venables will be celebrating their 63rd wedding anniversary in less than a month.

The parents of three children, Buck and Lorraine are proud grandparents to eight grandchildren and five great grandchildren.

Their only daughter lives in Osoyoos with her family, while their two sons live with their families in Powell River, where Buck spent most of his adult life working in the huge paper mill in the northern B.C. town. He worked there for 36 years.

They have called Osoyoos home for the past 35 years as they moved here after Buck quit his job at the paper mill and he wanted to be closer to his elderly parents, who had retired and lived in Beaverdell.

“We used to come to Osoyoos with the kids on summer vacation for many, many years and always loved it,” said Lorraine. “We never dreamed we would ever live here, but when we came to visit Buck’s parents, I ended up finding a job at the old Super Value store in Osoyoos and eventually so did Buck.

“We decided this is where we wanted to be and we’ve been here ever since.”

Buck grew up in a small northern Manitoba town called Winnipegosis, but moved at age four when his father decided to join his grandfather in running a homestead farm in Boissevain, Manitoba.

But that didn’t last long either.

“There was no money to be made in farming in those days, so my father packed up the family and moved us to Vancouver,” he said.

He found a job as a welder at the Granville Street shipyards, where ironically, Lorraine’s father also spent most of his career.

“They worked at the same shipyards for years, but there were thousands of men working there and they never met until we got married,” said Lorraine.

In their 62 years of marriage, Lorraine and Buck insist they have never had a single serious fight.

“We have the odd argument, which I’m sure most couples do, but I honestly can’t remember ever having a big fight, not even once,” she said.

The key to a successful marriage, in his opinion is working as a team, said Buck.

“We’ve always worked so well together,” he said. “When I chastised the kids, she would always have my back and when she chastised them, I would always have her back.

“We’ve always been a very good team. I realized a long time ago that you can’t change someone’s mind about certain things and it’s just better to back off.”

Lorraine said the fact Buck is a wonderful husband, father and grandfather is just part of his charm.

“He’s still a great looking guy and we just get along so well to this day, like we always have,” she said.”

As Buck and Lorraine both approach age 81, they say being blessed with great health has also largely contributed to their happy marriage as they’ve never had to endure the stress related to other people their age who have to battle serious illness.

“We’ve both been blessed with great health our entire lives,” said Buck. “Besides the odd pill and the one knee I needed to get replaced about nine years ago, we’ve never had to go through serious illness and we’re just very fortunate that way.’

Buck and Lorraine both agree that it makes them sad when they see so many young couples get divorced soon after getting married.

“Today’s kids are a lot different than our generation,” said Buck. “They get in one big fight or argument and they’re talking divorce.

“It just wasn’t like that when we were growing up. We were a team and we knew we were in it for life.”

Another good piece of advice she would give to young couples is to manage their money and not get deep into debt, said Lorraine.

“We simply never bought things we couldn’t afford and it’s still like that to this day,” she said. “I came from a family of five kids, so I knew what it was like to go without.

“I can tell you that financial stress is one of the most difficult challenges in any marriage and my advice would be to try and buy only what you can afford and not get deep into debt because it can be very hard on a marriage.”

For many Osoyoos residents, Buck is well-known as a long-time member of the Legion Band that plays regular gigs at Mariposa Gardens and Branch 97 of the Royal Canadian Legion in Osoyoos.

“I’ve loved music my whole life and Lorraine loves it too as she still knows all the words to all the good old songs,” he said.

Looking back at their life together, Buck and Lorraine say it has been a wonderful ride filled with endless happiness and good times.

“I have to say that we’ve truly been blessed,” he said. “We still love each other, our kids and grandkids are all healthy and have good jobs. We really couldn’t ask for much more.”

Lorraine said she’s really glad she “took a shine” to Buck that day on the bus more than 60 years ago.

“I said he would be my husband and I was right,” she said smiling. “We’ve had a wonderful life together and I agree we’ve been blessed.”

Both plan on continuing to play tons of golf at Osoyoos Golf Club and travelling across B.C. in their trusty fifth wheel trailer.

KEITH LACEY

Osoyoos Times

Buck and Lorraine Venables say they never had a single serious fight in the almost 63 years they’ve been married. The key to their successful marriage, says Buck, is the couple works together as a team. Lorraine says Buck is a wonderful husband, father and grandfather. (Keith Lacey photo)

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