Gertrude Mokotoff and Alvin Mann were introduced eight years ago at a gym in Middletown, N.Y., where they still work out twice a week.
“A mutual friend said to me, ‘I’d like you to meet a very nice young lady,’” Mr. Mann recalled after chopping wood one recent morning at his mountaintop home in nearby Cuddebackville, N.Y.
On their first date, he drove her to a restaurant in Middletown called Something Sweet. “He was a perfect gentleman,” she said, and he added, “There was something about her that made me want to keep on talking.”
In a heartbeat, they became an item, talking about dreams and goals and sharing a life together.
Mr. Mann, who had seen the world through the eyes of a young United States merchant seaman, returned from troubled seas and found enough peace and quiet in Cuddebackville to focus on getting a college degree. Ms. Mokotoff, five years his senior, …
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