They’re a couple of diamonds, these two

60 YEARS MARRIED: Marilyn and Lex Lexmond sit centre stage surrounded by family who have travelled from The Netherlands to join the party for their diamond wedding anniversary. Back row from left are Henri Meure (nephew), Ronald Meure (nephew), Rene van Geest (son-in-law), Marja Meure (Henri’s wife), Karin Kindt (niece), Jeff Kindt (Karin’s son), Bram Kindt (Karin’s husband), Jolanda Hoek (niece), Wout Schaap (Jolanda’s husband). In the front row from left are Jan-Marie Lexmond (daughter), Marilyn and Lex Lexmond, and Trudy Lexmond (sister). Picture by Paul Rickard


Marilyn Lexmond remembers clear as day a particular moment during her wedding to Lex Lexmond 60 years ago.

It was December 27, 1958 at a Catholic church in Gore.

Lex was supposed to say he took Marilyn as his “lawful wife”.

But in a mix of nerves, and with a heavy Dutch accent, it came out in front of everyone that he would take Marilyn as his “awful” wife.

“He’s been paying for it ever since,” laughs Marilyn.

Today the couple celebrate their diamond wedding anniversary with around 90 friends and family, some whom have travelled from as far away as the Netherlands, and the South Island, for the big event.

Marilyn, 79, is a Kiwi girl from Southland.

Lex, 83, emigrated from Holland in 1955 and worked on a number of hydro dams around the South Island.

His accent is still very strong today even after decades of living in New Zealand.

The couple met when Marilyn, a post girl at the time, hand-delivered Lex his telegrams and mail from Holland when he lived at a boarding house.

She remembers saying to him back then, “for goodness sake speak English”.

“I’m that sort of person who won’t just think something, I say it too. It can get you into trouble sometimes,” admits Marilyn.

Asked if there were any words of wisdom to share with readers about how to stay married for so long, Marilyn paused.

“What on earth would it be. Holy smoke. Well, I call myself a survivor. Hang on, I’ll ask my husband

“Excuse me, Lex, have you got any words of wisdom to tell this reporter about how you have managed to survive with me for so long?”

Murmured voices can be heard in the background before Marilyn gets back on the phone, “No, he’s got nothing wise at all to say. Dear, oh dear, oh dear.”

Marilyn says everyone has differences in life and it was important to “work them out”.

“Even if you don’t talk to each other for a month.

“There’s no use running away from problems, you’ve just got to work them out. I hear some people say you should solve every argument before the sun sets, we don’t do that.”

But they do longevity, and tonight they will celebrate 60 years of marriage, a lot of laughs and raising six children together, at the Gisborne Park Golf Club.

The couple also have 14 grandchildren, and three great grandchildren.

“We are looking forward to seeing everybody and having a good time,” said Marilyn.

Marilyn Lexmond remembers clear as day a particular moment during her wedding to Lex Lexmond 60 years ago.

It was December 27, 1958 at a Catholic church in Gore.

Lex was supposed to say he took Marilyn as his “lawful wife”.

But in a mix of nerves, and with a heavy Dutch accent, it came out in front of everyone that he would take Marilyn as his “awful” wife.

“He’s been paying for it ever since,” laughs Marilyn.

Today the couple celebrate their diamond wedding anniversary with around 90 friends and family, some whom have travelled from as far away as the Netherlands, and the South Island, for the big event.

Marilyn, 79, is a Kiwi girl from Southland.

Lex, 83, emigrated from Holland in 1955 and worked on a number of hydro dams around the South Island.

His accent is still very strong today even after decades of living in New Zealand.

The couple met when Marilyn, a post girl at the time, hand-delivered Lex his telegrams and mail from Holland when he lived at a boarding house.

She remembers saying to him back then, “for goodness sake speak English”.

“I’m that sort of person who won’t just think something, I say it too. It can get you into trouble sometimes,” admits Marilyn.

Asked if there were any words of wisdom to share with readers about how to stay married for so long, Marilyn paused.

“What on earth would it be. Holy smoke. Well, I call myself a survivor. Hang on, I’ll ask my husband

“Excuse me, Lex, have you got any words of wisdom to tell this reporter about how you have managed to survive with me for so long?”

Murmured voices can be heard in the background before Marilyn gets back on the phone, “No, he’s got nothing wise at all to say. Dear, oh dear, oh dear.”

Marilyn says everyone has differences in life and it was important to “work them out”.

“Even if you don’t talk to each other for a month.

“There’s no use running away from problems, you’ve just got to work them out. I hear some people say you should solve every argument before the sun sets, we don’t do that.”

But they do longevity, and tonight they will celebrate 60 years of marriage, a lot of laughs and raising six children together, at the Gisborne Park Golf Club.

The couple also have 14 grandchildren, and three great grandchildren.

“We are looking forward to seeing everybody and having a good time,” said Marilyn.

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