Stockton Couple Gives Secrets to Successful Marriage on 70th Anniversary

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A roar of applause broke out Friday morning for Eddie and Jessie Macon at the Commons retirement home in Stockton.

The Macons toasted to each other in much the same way they did 70 years ago.

“Look at that beautiful lady,” Eddie Macon recounted as he told FOX40 of what he thought of his then future wife when they first met.

“I liked how he looked,” Jessie Macon said, repeating her first thought of the man who would become her husband.

They were still students at Edison High School in Stockton when they met. They became fast friends but the wedding bells didn’t sound off as quickly. That is, until Jessie made her intentions clear.

“When she told me I was going to marry her, that’s when I knew we were going to get married,” Eddie said.

Shortly after the wedding, Eddie was drafted into the NFL. He became the first African American player for the Chicago Bears in the 1950s when segregation was still a legal reality. Their marriage helped the couple cope.

“It has been a good partnership but she was the boss,” he said.

Decades later, the two are still very much in love and are a leading example for their children.

“Not take things so personally, but understand that when you put two people together, they’re as different as night and day,” Marilyn Macon-Gayles, the couple’s daughter said.

As for the couple’s secret to a long-lasting marriage, Eddie said it’s because of the bad times, not despite it, that they’ve stayed together for so long.

“Gotta have a fight every now and then. Gotta have something to make up for,” Eddie said as he laughed.