‘Make sure you stay best friends’: Local couple celebrates big milestone

Beverly and Paul “Buck” Bucknam just did something very few couples get to do. On Oct. 24, they celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary.

“We never gave up on each other,” Beverly said as the couple sat down with the Current recently. They shared their secret to a long and happy marriage.

“We were married for four months when Buck was deployed to Korea,” Beverly said. “He was gone for 16 months. It wasn’t a very happy time. So, we already knew what it’s like to be apart. And we never wanted to be apart again.”

The couple met in 1951 after a football game at Norwich University. Buck was from Winthrop and Beverly from Shrewsbury. After they married, they moved to the North Shore, where they raised three sons.

They now have 10 grandchildren and 16 great-grandchildren. The family is spread across the country.

“Make sure you stay best friends,” Buck said about making a marriage work. “You know what the other needs.”

Buck, who worked as a civil engineer, worked late many nights, traveling for meetings around the state and beyond. But he came home most nights, “no matter how late,” he said.

“I always wanted to have breakfast with the family,” he said.

Buck said it helps when husband and wife share interests. For the Bucknams, those interests are sailing and traveling. They’ve sailed up and down the East Coast. They’ve visited 48 of the 50 states.

Date nights

As a young couple, the Bucknams enjoyed eating at a neighborhood Italian restaurant.

“You really only went out on New Year’s Eve in those days,” Beverly said.

Now their favorite date night is dinner at the Corinthian Yacht Club.

“There’s no place better than the Corinthian’s porch,” according to Beverly.

The couple has been celebrating their anniversary, and Beverly’s June birthday, with family members and friends for the last few months. 

So, what’s next for the happy couple?

“Staying healthy together and visiting our kids,” Buck said.

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Editor Leigh Blander is an experienced TV, radio and print journalist who has written hundreds of stories for local newspapers, including the Marblehead Reporter.

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