John and Molly celebrate 65 years

ANNIVERSARY: John and Molly Dunneman celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary with family and friends in their Port Augusta home. Photo: Peter Taylor.
ANNIVERSARY: John and Molly Dunneman celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary with family and friends in their Port Augusta home. Photo: Peter Taylor.

John walked past Molly every day on his way to work, his way to lunch and for any other excuse he could think of until he finally worked up the courage to ask her out.

"He asked me out at a dance one night, but I was already going out with someone else," Molly laughed.

Molly was living in Jamestown and John, working at the post office, would travel around the region - always finding an excuse to come back to Jamestown for dances.

"There were a lot of dances back then," John explained.

"This particular time I was taking her over to Crystal Brook to meet her boyfriend for something or other.

"I went on to something else and picked her up on the way back home. We didn't get in until six in the morning."

"He had too much to drink and couldn't drive home," Molly added

"So I drove and every time I went over 30 he turned the car off!"

After their early morning adventure, the pair developed a relationship and Molly broke up with her boyfriend at the time.

"I was pretty good at getting rid of them," Molly said.

"A bit like changing your socks you reckon," John joked.

Within six months of their first date on July 10, 1954, the pair were married.

John and Molly on their wedding day in 1954.

John and Molly on their wedding day in 1954.

Molly still gushes over her engagement ring and John remembers the story fondly.

"In 1953 Madare won the Port Augusta Cup and of course I backed it," he said.

"Then we went to Adelaide because the Queen was out here and there were races on at Morphettville

"In the first race there was a horse called Madare and I backed it! It won 16-to-one and I paid for the engagement ring."

John and Molly Dunneman moved to Woomera shortly after their wedding where they had their first son.

They shifted around the country six more times before settling in Port Augusta, having three more children on their travels.

They've been married for 65 years and are the proud grandparents of six grandchildren.

"We were just compatible, that's the main point. I'm pretty laid back and she's firey at times - that balances itself out," John said.

"I call myself the head honcho," Molly laughed.

Their secret to a long marriage? Having separate interests and focusing on family.

"We were always there for our kids and they knew that if they wanted any help they could come to us. We were fairly good parents," Molly explained.

"She's the centre of the family that keeps them all together and that's why they are all so close. I think that's principally her role and it seems to work," John added.

John and Molly marked their 65 years of marriage in a week of celebrations spent with family and friends in their Port Augusta home.

They look forward to many more years of happiness together and eventually, some great-grandchildren.