Updated: 02/13/2014 7:36 PM
Created: 02/10/2014 4:15 PM KSTP.com
By: Leslie Dyste
In his nearly 40 years at 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS, Jason Davis has covered countless love stories. In celebration of Valentine's Day we asked Jason to share his favorite love story.
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In 1928, 23-year-old teacher Leona Doty taught a freckle-faced eighth-grader named Wendell Buttermore.
The years flowed by and Wendell went on to become a Wesleyan minister in Nebraska and Doty married an engineer and taught school for more than 45 years.
When Buttermore's wife died, they met again. "The very day that my wife passed away, was when I met her the second time after 68 years," he said.
A letter of condolence from Doty to Buttermore began a flurry of correspondence that soon led to Buttermore writing "I'm going on record between you and I, right now, asking you to marry me." Ever the school teacher, Doty corrected Buttermore's proposal. "You can't say you and I, it's got to be you and me, and I correct you every chance I get," she said.
Buttermore got a ''B'' in grammar, but an ''A+'' for asking the right question. "She said honey, I just got your letter, my answer is so sweet, my answer is yes," Buttermore recalled.
Buttermore teared up as he read the letter, which said "The one thing that does make a difference, is that you have asked me to share my life with you. That I will freely and willingly do."
It was a whirlwind romance conducted by mail and by phone. Doty remembered the conversations being "very juicy."
On Nov. 10, 1996, 80-year-old Buttermore married 90-year-old Doty in the one-room schoolhouse where she taught him, more than six decades earlier.
Doty walked down the aisle ringing the school bell that she was using when Charles Lindbergh made his first flight across the Atlantic.
Doty said just because you become old, life doesn't have to end, it can begin again.
Leona Buttermore died on July 20, 2003 at the age of 94. Three months later to the day, her husband Wendell Buttermore died at the age of 84.