THEN AND NOW: Nyal and Margaret McClymont on their wedding day in 1956 and in 2014.
THEN AND NOW: Nyal and Margaret McClymont on their wedding day in 1956 and in 2014. Contributed

Date with destiny blooms into 60-year marriage

WHEN Nyal McClymont asked his girlfriend Margaret what she wanted for her birthday, she said she didn't want anything, but a ring was the next best thing.

The pair were soon married in St Mary's Church in Grafton, and today celebrate their 60th wedding anniversary.

Their daughter, Suzanne McClymont, said it was great to see her parents reach the milestone.

"They're celebrating their anniversary up the coast at Alexandra Headland for a time away, and will be back on Saturday for their party," she said.

Margaret grew up in the Grafton area, spending six years at the Cowper orphanage, and moved to Wollongong to pursue a career in nursing.

Nyal grew up around the Richmond area, the fourth eldest of 10 children. He served in the Korean War from 1951-1952, and moved to Wollongong after his tour of duty.

The pair first met at an army ball, where Nyal was working and Margaret and some nursing friends were invited to the event.

Three weeks later, the nurses received a call from the barracks to see if any of the nurses who were at the dance wished to go out with some of the army boys. Margaret accepted, and was paired with Nyal to go on a date to the movies.

Their love grew from there, and in 18 months Nyal had proposed, before the couple moved back to Grafton and were married on St Patrick's Day in 1956.

The couple have lived at their current address in Grafton for the past 52 years.

In 1957 their first child, Suzanne, was born. She was followed by Jennifer, Lawrence, Patrick, Catherine, Christopher and Joanne.

Nyal went on to work for many of the shire councils in the Clarence Valley as a plant operator, driving steam rollers and graders, while Margaret had her hands full looking after their seven children.

"We have such a great family. Mum and Dad brought us up well, brought us up to love and respect each other and you can't ask for much more than that."

The family has grown in the past 60 years, and now boasts 18 grandchildren and 25 great-grandchildren.



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