British woman and former German POW celebrate their 60th wedding anniversary
15 August 2007, London (dpa) - Their wedding made headlines around the world and gained them piles of hate mail, but 60 years later, the German- British couple, Heinz and June Fellbrich, are still "madly in love."
15 August 2007
London (dpa) - Their wedding made headlines around the world and gained them piles of hate mail, but 60 years later, the German- British couple, Heinz and June Fellbrich, are still "madly in love."
Now about to celebrate their 60th wedding anniversary, the couple had become the first in which a British woman married "the enemy" - a German prisoner-of-war from World War II.
June Fellbrich, now 79, and Heinz Fellbrich, 86, first saw each other in Southampton, where he was being held at a POW camp.
"I saw him on the other side of the fence and thought he was absolutely gorgeous," June Fellbrich told the BBC.
After exchanging wedding vows, Heinz was returned to his POW camp and the newlyweds only managed a fleeting kiss at the camp fence. Heinz was released from the POW camp in 1948.
At the time, the wedding photo appeared in newspapers around the world but it caused a storm of controversy in Britain, so soon after the war against Nazi Germany. The couple received stacks of hate mail and people spat at them on the street.
"My family, friends and people were very hostile at the time," June Fellbrich recalled. ""Some of them had lost their husbands and sons in the war."
But their love won out.
"We were madly in love, still are and always will be," said Heinz Fellbrich.
Their marriage bore fruit, with six children, 12 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren. They live today in Eastleigh in southern England.
"The secret to a good marriage is happiness, truth and don't go astray," the former German soldier, who was captured in France, says. "I was lucky. During the war I never thought I would have such a happy life."
June Fellbrich told BBC: "I know it was worth it because I loved him and still do and that's the secret of our married life - love."
The couple plan to celebrate their silver wedding anniversary with relatives of Heinz near Hamburg in northern Germany on Saturday.
Subject: German news