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Glancer Magazine

COVER STORY | Love & Marriage, 5 Happy Couples Share

Cover Story, Love & Marriage, Glancer Magazine, Feb 2018


Lucky in love and best friends makes for happy days and a long lasting marriage. Meet 5 west suburban couples who share with us what keeps their love alive.

Happy Couple #1 Mary Rose and Joel Widmer GENEVA–Joel and Mary Rose have been married for 6 years and have lived in the Western Suburbs since. They pray and worship together at New Covenant Bible Church; eat together at Burger Local, Barrel and Rye, Altiro, Wok N Fire, Doughocracy, and Puebla; learn together parenting their 17-month old, Adeline; and play together traveling all over from New York to Florida to Texas to California, as well as internationally to France, the Dominican Republic, Mexico, China, Vietnam, Japan, and best of all Italy, where Joel proposed to Mary Rose.

While the couple loves to do fun things together like traveling, they thoroughly appreciate doing everyday things side by side. Joel is a web designer and Mary Rose is a marketing consultant; as well as, the owner of Mary Rose Photography, a local wedding and portrait company. They consistently work on projects together, including building websites for local businesses. These two lovebirds also actually enjoy cooking and cleaning together too!

When weather permits, they take in outdoor activities such as biking the trails around the Fox River or having a picnic at Pottawatomie and Island Park. You might also find them floating in an inflatable boat down the Fox River! Joel and Mary Rose are each other’s biggest cheerleader, greatest critic, and the inspiration behind all romantic and dreamy sensibilities.

Happy Couple #2 Ralph and Marilyn Bava LISLE–Ralph and Marilyn became high school sweethearts during sophomore year co-ed dancing at Bloom High School in Chicago Heights, IL. Through their 52 years of marriage, they feel blessed to be sharing love and life together while enjoying the sights and sounds of New York City, the panoramic vistas of northern California, the sunny beaches of Florida and southern California, and biking in Galena. They enjoy making special memories on annual trips with their grandkids at Wisconsin Dells, Springfield, New Salem, Naples, and Michigan’s eastern shore; and also formed their own fan club, cheering them on at their various sporting events.

Amazingly enough, they find time for every family occasion and manage to ensure quality time for each other on international adventures including in France, Italy, Turkey, Sweden, Finland, Latvia, Russia and Poland.

Even when home in Lisle, these two thoroughly enjoy their retirement at local venues with walks and events at the Morton Arboretum; history and house tours at Cantigny; an ice cream treat at the Book Nook; and dinner at their favorite restaurant, Chinn’s.

Somehow, Marilyn still finds time to volunteer at Trinity Lutheran Church in Lisle, read her favorite book, and babysit her newest grandchild; while Ralph actively serves on the Board of their Naples Condo Association, is landscape liaison for their Lisle Homeowners association, and enjoys local Cruise Night events.

These two are the perfect example of living life fully with the one you love most!

Happy Couple #3 Jeffrey and Mary Ann Segebarth GLEN ELLYN–They met at The Hudson Club in Chicago over 17 years ago, lived in Lincoln Park for the next 10 years, until discovering Glen Ellyn 6 years ago. They have built their relationship on the simplicity of loving, and laughing, and laughing a lot! Jeff and Mary Ann are compassionate, fun, driven, and generous, and enjoy sharing new experiences with their two sons, Ryan (11) and Scottie (9).

“We traveled a lot before they were born and it's even better being a foursome and seeing their excitement when we see somewhere new,” Mary Ann says. “Our newest family member is our Mini Golden Doodle, Cubbie QB.”

As a couple, they enjoy date nights at Fire and Wine, as well as trips to the city for Cubs Games, museums, and plays; and Christmas Dinner at Gibson’s is an annual tradition not to be missed. They treasure building memories with their kids at the Morton Arboretum, Centennial Beach, and Sunset Pool; as well as, finding new places to go during time off of school - most recently returning from a ski trip at Crystal Mountain in Michigan, and soon to be a trip to Atlantis in the Bahamas for spring break.

Jeff’s job as a software executive keeps him quite busy, but he is committed to coaching his boys’ football, basketball and baseball teams; while Mary Ann remains active chairing St. Petronille’s school auction and The Boosterthon Fun Run. Work hard to play hard keeps these two loving life!

Photo Credit: Vande Woestyne Photography

Happy Couple #4

Mark and Mary Goetz

NAPERVILLE–It was 41 years ago that Mark went to Dhahran, Saudi Arabia to work as a consultant to Aramco, the Arabian American Oil Company (now Saudi Aramco); subsequently, a year later, Mary began teaching for the Aramco Schools. She joined the women's softball team that Mark had coached just the year prior. What began on the Saudi Arabian softball fields has continued into a love story and amazing adventure for 40 years, the last 30 in Naperville.

Together they maintain a relationship motto of "keep moving and eat healthy" which is easily achieved through their extensive overseas travels visiting five of the seven continents and over 50 countries. Most recently, they traveled to Switzerland and Italy where they rode bikes along the Rhine River and hiked in the Ebenalp area and Cinque Terre. Additionally, they have hiked in the Himalaya Mountains, having a yak and sherpas to assist with their belongings. With one son, daughter-in-law and three grandchildren in NY and a son in Oregon, they explore those areas while visiting. They've gone on biking adventures throughout New England, the Midwest and Colorado. Mark has also found time to run 21 marathons, including 5 Boston marathons.

Locally, they enjoy working out at Lifetime Fitness with Jen Hoeft. Mary loves yoga as well and they enjoy cross country skiing and walking. They both love to volunteer and have been involved in scouts, church activities and homeless shelters. Soon they will be joining a humanitarian trip to Haiti.

Thoroughly living a life they love.

Happy Couple #5

Jona Triner and Larry Sepulveda

NAPERVILLE / DOWNERS GROVE–Living next door to each other in Downers Grove, Jona and Larry’s parents were good friends; however, due to the eight year age difference, they really didn’t hang out when they were younger. Life took them on different paths as they matured, but Larry had always remained in Downers Grove with his two sons and took care of his parents until their passing. Jona also stayed in the west suburbs, residing in Naperville with her two teen daughters.

Then in early 2016, Larry came up as a match on eHarmony, and the pair reconnected via Facebook. With four teenagers, full-time jobs, and separate households, it wasn’t easy finding time to date, but the two managed to enjoy casual dinners and music at local places like Emmett’s in Downers Grove, Johnny’s Blitz in Westmont, Uncle Julio’s in Lombard/Oakbrook, Freedom Brother’s Pizzeria and Alehouse in Plainfield, and The Bavarian Lodge in Lisle. During the warmer months, the couple enjoys time on the open road via

Larry’s Harley, most often attending charity rides in route.

“We also enjoy trips to Green Lake Wisconsin to visit my parents, who sold their Downers Grove home in 1998,” Jona says. “The kids enjoy boating, tubing and fishing when there.” This year, they will be doing their first road trip with all four teens to Marco Island, FL for spring break; and they will end the summer on a high when the pair ties the knot on August 18, 2018!

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