AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:
The Elim Christian Fellowship Church in Buffalo, New York, will host a special wedding this Saturday between two people who have more than a little history. They're both 85; both grandparents; and both survived the deaths of their previous spouses. Oh, and they divorced each other 48 years ago.
LENA HENDERSON: I never thought that I'd get married again.
CORNISH: That's Lena Henderson. In 1944, she and Roland Davis were high school sweethearts when they married. They had four children before divorcing amicably, 20 years later. Eventually, both remarried. He moved to Colorado; she had another child; and life went on. Then, in 1996, one of their sons died. After that...
HENDERSON: He would call, to see how I was doing. And his wife and I, we would get on the phone and talk to each other. Everything was, you know, nice and friendly. There was no, how come you're calling her? or, how come you're talking to him? - or nothing like that. I had a nice rapport with her.
CORNISH: Last winter, Davis' wife died. His eldest daughter convinced him to move to Buffalo, so he could be closer to the rest of the family. She didn't realize he was already growing closer to her mother - his ex-wife - over the phone. Then, near Easter, Roland Davis popped the question to Lena Henderson - for the second time.
HENDERSON: He says, would you marry me? I say, what? Would you marry me? I say, well - um - hmm. And then I said yes, I will.
RENITA SHADWICK: Immediately, my sister and I began to plan a wedding. That was it. We were sold. (LAUGHTER) Abeedabeedabee - sold! (LAUGHTER)
CORNISH: That's Renita Shadwick, the couple's youngest daughter. She was 6 when they separated, and admits her parents reuniting is a childhood dream come true. Growing up, she never heard them speak ill of each other. But until now, she says, she never realized exactly what she missed by not seeing them as a couple.
SHADWICK: I see the way that he comes along beside her, and wants to help her as she's walking inside of a building; or the way he scoots around her, to open up a door. I look at the way my mother smiles at him when he's talking about something. Those are the moments that I pray that all children are looking at, when they're looking at their parents loving one another.
CORNISH: Four generations will participate in the wedding - daughters as bridesmaids, grandchildren as groomsmen, great-grandchildren as ring bearers. Again, here's daughter Renita Shadwick.
SHADWICK: It is very unusual, I think, but it's also very precious because all of us now, collectively, get to kind of be a part of our past (LAUGHTER) in our future - or in our present. (LAUGHTER)
CORNISH: Shadwick's mother, Lena Henderson, will be sporting a light-gray dress as she marries the man she divorced nearly five decades ago. And she has this advice for anyone who thinks love has passed them by.
HENDERSON: Never give up. You never know what tomorrow's going to bring.
CORNISH: Eighty-five-year-old Lena Henderson will take 85-year-old Roland Davis - again - as her lawfully wedded husband, this Saturday.
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