Checker and Lodders went through criticism and discrimination until three years after their wedding when the ban on interracial marriage was lifted.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on August 24, 2022. It has since been updated.
One couple reinforcing our belief in true love is Chubby Checker and Catharina Lodders ,who have stayed through thick and thin for 59 years, reported Info Kosova.
Chubby Checker is an American rock and roll singer who has been in the music business for over 60 years. Known for his famous single, Let's Twist Again, the musician has had many fans grooving to his tracks on the dance floor over the years. He was born in 1941 in South Carolina and was raised in South Philadelphia. Growing up, he rapidly learned that one of his greatest talents was mimicry. By high school, he was entertaining his peers by mimicking Jerry Lee Lewis, Elvis Presley, and Fats Domino.
Checker was also one of the rockstars who gave 35 hits in his career, along with a Grammy win. He not only made people worldwide fall in love with him but he stole the heart of Catharina Lodders, who won the Miss World beauty pageant in London in 1962. She was a 20-year-old Dutch model when she entered the pageant.
Their relationship was one with many challenges, with the interracial couple being subjected to racism and criticized for it. The hate that they received only made their love for each other grow stronger and deeper. Checker and Lodders knew what they wanted in life and they didn't hesitate about being together even if society said otherwise. Staying true to their promises, the couple took the next step and got married in 1964.
Thurston Hopkins/ Twist idol Chubby Checker and his bride-to-be Catharina Lodders, the 1963 pic.twitter.com/C5NONbeeii— oscar angilletta (@angil_55) April 28, 2014
Just one month after her position as Miss World came to an end, in December 1963, Checker proposed to Lodders at his parents' house. They had first met in Manila in January 1962.
The Civil Rights Act of 1964 had just been passed when the couple got married. The act removed restrictions on African-Americans' ability to vote and marked the end of racial segregation in the military, educational institutions, and fundamental government functions, but it still did not allow interracial marriage. Checker and Lodders went through criticism and discrimination until three years after their marriage when the ban was lifted.
In one of his interviews in 2015 with Philadelphia Magazine, Checker talked about his marriage with Lodders and the difficulty they faced as a couple. When asked about his response to people finding out he was marrying a white woman, he said, "I didn’t care. Love ain’t got no color on it.”
The couple got married at the Temple Lutheran Church in Pennsauken, New Jersey. Both of them were 22 years old. Their wedding ceremony was performed by Rev. George L. Garver, who made no mention of the couple's mixed-race union. The pastor indeed saw the two people as individuals who were committing to standing by each other rather than looking at the discrimination. According to reports, the couple visited Rev. George for his 100th birthday.
Checker and Lodders encountered discrimination when they first tried to buy a new home in Philadelphia during the early months of their marriage, but they weren't deterred and in 1965, they bought a house outside of Philadelphia, where they still live today.
Bianca Johanna Evans, WNBA player Mistie Bass, and musician Shan Egan are the three successful children of their marriage, which has been nurtured by their love and understanding. They have seven grandchildren altogether.
The couple truly is the definition of soulmates, and the fact that their 59-year-long marriage is still growing stronger with each day is proof that love indeed conquers all.
Cover Image Credit: Getty Images| Kevin Winter| Staff