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Couple celebrate 75 years together

GRAND FORKS, N.D. - Carl and Elizabeth Lyngby have been married 75 years. Elizabeth says the secret to their marriage involves respect, friendship and love. And it doesn't hurt that her husband does his own ironing.

GRAND FORKS, N.D. - Carl and Elizabeth Lyngby have been married 75 years. Elizabeth says the secret to their marriage involves respect, friendship and love. And it doesn't hurt that her husband does his own ironing.

The Lyngbys, both 94, have known each other for most of their lives.

Married on Dec. 24, 1931, they have spent 75 Christmas Eves together as husband and wife.

Carl and Elizabeth were raised in Hannaford, a small town north of Valley City.

"I remember when we were in first grade. Carl spoke only Norwegian," Elizabeth said. "It was a good thing the teacher, Mrs. Olson, spoke it, too. It really helped him catch up."

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Both Carl and Elizabeth come from large families.

Carl's parents immigrated from Norway, and raised a family of five. Elizabeth Knauss's parents, whose heritage was a blend of German and English, were raised out East before settling in Hannaford.

Elizabeth and her twin sister, Margaret, grew up in a family of eight.

"She was the prettiest girl in Hannaford," Carl said of his wife.

They were married at age 19 in the home Elizabeth grew up in near the park in Hannaford.

Their memories are sharp when remembering the tough times families had during the Great Depression following the stock market crash Oct. 29, 1931.

"I remember one of my brothers being concerned about us getting married at such a hard time," Elizabeth said.

The Lyngbys have two daughters, Joan Reinhardt of Grand Forks and Alison Keyes in California. They've been blessed with two grandchildren and one great-grandson.

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After graduating from high school, Carl and Elizabeth continued their education at the Hannaford School. Elizabeth earned a certificate in business shorthand and typing while Carl studied the bookkeeping business.

They moved their family to Grand Forks in 1950. Elizabeth worked as a secretary at the Grand Forks County office building while Carl worked at the J.D. Implement Company.

She retired at age 64, and Carl at age 65.

They live in a town house in Grand Forks.

The secret to their marriage involves some basic ingredients, Elizabeth said.

"First you need respect. We've had a respect for one another that grew out of friendship, which grew into a deep love," she said.

"Carl is the most patient man in the world. He was so helpful as a father and around the house, always fixing things and able to do his own ironing," she said.

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