Tampa couple celebrates 70th anniversary

The Tomasellos married during World War II

TAMPA - Angie and Fred Tomasello like to joke that on the day when America celebrates gaining its independence, that's the day they both lost theirs.  The Tampa couple were married on July 4, 1943, and are celebrating a remarkable 70 years together.  

"It isn't easy," Angie said.  "You take it one day at a time," said Fred.

Both were married in the midst of World War II, and while the Fourth of July seemed like a festive date, they chose it because it was the only time Fred had off before being sent to the South Pacific as a soldier in the Army.

Angie gave birth to her first child while Fred was overseas, and he didn't meet the little boy until he was 13 months old.  

While Angie was born in Tampa, Fred was from Illinois, but he instantly loved Florida's weather compared to the freezing midwest winters.  They settled in West Tampa, building three homes over the course of seven decades.  Fred owned a beauty salon for 27 years, and his favorite client was Angie, of course.

"Got my hair done every week, and I didn't have to pay," she laughed.

Angie said that despite the bickering from time to time, both always managed to work things out.

"Young people today, they just get married today and divorce tomorrow," she said.

They currently reside in the Bayshore Presbyterian Apartments, a senior community, and at 90 years old, they both are members of the building's "fabulous 90's" club, but they're the only married couple.

Belle Morsley, 83, said in her 11 years in the high rise, she's never ceased to be amazed at their longevity.  After all, she was married four times.

"70 years?  I doubt if I could stay seven months," Morsley said.

Angie's daughter, Norma Tomasello-Caltageroni, said her parents are an example on what love and marriage is all about.

"We're just so grateful for all their sacrifices," she said.

When asked if they have a secret to staying together that long, both said, not really.  

Fred turned to his wife and said the words he's probably said a million times.

"I love you," he said.  "He loves me," Angie said.

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