Donna & Wes Peppers: Faces in the Crowd
Valentine’s Day is a day to celebrate love. A lasting relationship takes a lot of love and then some. Anya Mueller sat down with a Rapid City couple who has been married 65 years and still going strong.
RAPID CITY, S.D. — Wes and Donna Peppers both chose teaching as a career and loved education. Wes also coached and became a band director. The day he met Donna, he was helping a friend at his music store. Donna was working there and trying to get Wes’s attention in a rather unusual way.
Wes says, “And we were in the new store setting up things and so forth and all of the sudden Donna came over and kicked me, ‘what in the world is going on here?’ I was minding my own business then later on she came over then kicked me again. I didn’t understand what this was all about, so I invested a meager amount on money into a cup of hot chocolate, after we were through that day and that was the beginning.”
They got married that same year in 1955 and, as they say, the rest is history. They became world travelers, enjoyed socializing with friends and going to movies. They raised a child together and say their faith is at the root of their relationship.
For the Peppers, staying married 65 years, hasn’t been so tough. When I asked their secret to their success, they had a few words of advice.
Donna says, “I guess not ever giving up, always being ready to try something new.” Wes chimes in, “And my favorite expression, ‘yes Donna’, ‘yes Donna’.”
Donna adds, “Not to be too judgmental – be willing to give a little and take a little and you have to cooperate.”
Their relationship is not without a daily dose of humor, Wes says.
Now they pass the time by playing bingo, reading and staying fit. They don’t take a moment for granted.
Wes says, “We’ve had a very good life and we are looking forward, not backwards – enjoying every minute.”
With a lifetime of memories in their hearts, the Peppers are still in love after all these years and ended the interview with a kiss.