Las Vegas couple married 78 years, longest in U.S. - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

Las Vegas couple married 78 years, longest in U.S.

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Wilbur & Theresa Faiss married in April, 1933 Wilbur & Theresa Faiss married in April, 1933
LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -

A Las Vegas couple, together for 78 years, received a high honor. They have been recognized as the longest-married couple in the United States, and it even caught the attention of the president.

As he looks through old photos, Wilbur Faiss can't help but smile about his wife and best friend, Theresa.

"You're in love, and that's all you think about, you know," Wilbur said.

Theresa wasn't feeling well enough for our interview, but Wilbur didn't mind doing the talking. He is 100 years-old and very quick for a centenarian.

Wilbur and Theresa married on April 14, 1933. Their oldest son, Bob, entered them into a contest. The Worldwide Marriage Encounter solicited nominations for the longest-married couple in the U.S.

Wilbur and Theresa won.

"I just had no idea of us ever winning the… longest-married couple," Wilbur said.

The couple's son, Bob, couldn't be more proud.

"I nominated him, and he did all the rest with my mom," said Bob Faiss.

The win was so special, that even President Barack Obama offered to mention the 78-year marriage during his recent stop in Las Vegas.

"How often does an ordinary guy get such recognition by the president of the United States?" Wilbur asked. "It's one of these things that are once in a lifetime."

But, there was a slight problem on the day of the president's speech.

"You must understand that I am over 100 years of age, and I'm a lot slower than I was at 90," he said.

They were late… too late to be allowed into the crowd, and the president dropped the mention from his remarks.

"We tried to get there, and we fought the crowds and all... but everything was over by then. We never got close to the president," said Wilbur.

The couple was disappointed, but not deterred. The White House has promised to return, and give the Faiss's the recognition they deserve.

"For a president as busy as he is, and with the pressures he has, to take time to salute a couple, and through them, salute the solidarity of marriage in the United States, I think it's remarkable," Bob Faiss said.

Wilbur Faiss has some experience with public office. He served as a Nevada state senator in the 1970s and 80s. The couple has several grandchildren and great grandchildren.

As for the 78 years of wedded bliss, Wilbur offers a tip…

"It's very simple... It's give and take, and compromise."

Copyright 2012 KVVU (KVVU Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.

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