It started with a casual remark from a neighbour: "you should meet the nice girl that lives down the road".
The year was 1950, and teenager Gordon Scholes and his dairy-farming family had moved to the rural community of Shannon in the Horowhenua District.
Word had spread that there was a new family on the block and wives were quick to make them feel welcome with family dinner invites.
One of the families had a daughter named Catherine, the "nice girl" neighbours had raved about, who "lived down the road".
Gordon and Catherine hit it off at that dinner, and before long they were married - on June 12, 1954.
Sixty-five years later, the couple are still just as smitten as that first meeting.
As hardworking newlyweds, the couple got straight into share-milking, first in Foxton then up to the Bay of Plenty on a farm based in Omokoroa in 1960.
Four girls and a boy later, and the pair were ready to own their own farm.
The seven-person family packed up and moved into a cramped implement shed on their new farm in Ohauiti, only a stone's throw away from their cow milking shed.
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The family were happy as ever, despite the crowded conditions. Catherine was the "homemaker" and Gordon was the "encourager, who never said no to anything", their daughter Yvonne said.
Catherine spent her days feeding the children from the vegetable garden, giving them milk straight from the cow's teat, washing their clothes by hand and using the fire to heat their baths.
Gordon was a go-getter with a great sense of humour; the children were always pumped with adrenalin as he put them on things like motorbikes and tractors and simply said "go".
A dad joke was never far away with Gordon. If a child fell off their bike, he'd run over and say "is the bike, all right?", which always got the children laughing.
In 1973, the family moved to a house they built just up the hill from the shed called "the palace" surrounded by incredible views of Mount Maunganui.
The pair were an excellent team when it came to parenting, farming and running a household and a couple that their children all looked up to.
The family were shaken when their sister and daughter Bethany died at the age of 26. However, it brought the family and the couple closer.
You should meet the nice girl that lives down the road.
Gordon said they'd seen "unbelievable changes" in Tauranga over the almost 50 years they had been here, and the population was only just scraping 30,000 when they arrived.
Subdivisions, lifestyle blocks and orchards went up around them as Tauranga's population boomed. However, he said the rural community surrounding them always kept them "wholesome".
The couple put their long marriage down to a household full of love that had been through their share of good and bad times and taking life on as a team.