This is probably the most unexpected Thanksgiving for Loni and Richard Williams.
A year ago, the two were separated by thousands of miles, their only connection was online chats but Richard summoned the courage to get in his RV and drive from central Oregon all the way to Kerrville. He had to meet Loni.
A week later they were engaged, a short time after that they were married. Both are 87.
The couple was enjoying their first Thanksgiving at Kerrville’s Salvation Army Kroc Center.
“I love it here but especially the people,” Richard said with his eyes firmly fixed on Loni.
This is the last thing that either one of them ever expected, but they are beaming like newlyweds in their 20s.
“We never talked romance,” Loni said. “When he came down and I saw him, I knew.”
There was no doubt in Richard’s mind.
“I praise God I met, her,” he said.
“God is a wonderful matchmaker,” she said.
Loni has lived in Kerrville since 1992. Richard, a retired mailman, has always been a soldier for the Salvation Army, but he didn’t think he’d fall in love and move to Texas. However, he’s been thrilled with the move, buying a house and looking forward to the future with his bride.
“I love that there are so many Christians down here,” Richard said.
The marriage, of course, had its doubters. Richard said his youngest daughter asked him to wait six months, but he said he knew he was doing the right thing.
“Six months at my age might as well be a death sentence,” he said with a wide smile.
Loni has been widowed four times, and never thought about marriage again until she met Richard online. Born in Cuba, she moved to Florida when she five years old but has called Texas home for much of her life.
Richard noted that he’s grateful for his life of hard work, delivering mail on a 10-mile route, but he doesn’t miss the challenge of delivering in the snow.
Richard has two daughters, both in their 60s, while Loni has a son and a daughter, also both in their 60s.
With their meal finished, they got up, hand-in-hand, and went home — to their home.
Loni said you may be too young to do some things, but you’re never too old to fall in love.