Lucien and Brooke Rivard remember their “love at first sight” as the bricks came tumbling down on the old Waynesville Junior High building. Cliché, right? To think two people fell in love at first sight?

This summer Lucien and Brooke will be celebrating their 30thwedding anniversary.  “My friends knew I had the biggest crush on him, but would never say hi, so one day they pushed me onto the basketball court where the boys were playing hoops.  He ran right into me.  Years later I would learn that he told his best friend that he would marry me someday,” Brooke said.  

Although Lucien moved on to High school and dated another girl from Brooke’s neighborhood, they found their way back together and were an official couple on August 5, 1984.

J.K. Rowling said, "You will never truly know yourself or the strength of your relationships until both have been tested by adversity," Brooke added, “That began to prove true when we found out I was pregnant.  Our first daughter was born the summer of 1987.  He went to college in Joplin and I worked hard to finish school, but we struggled, both of us unsure of how we were going to continue on.  He asked me to marry him and I turned him down on four occasions.  (We joke about this yet today!) We were finally married in August of 1988.  We added another daughter in 1989 and a son in 1992.”  

Lucien and Brooke believe they fell in love at first sight. The attraction for one another created a bond that, since then, has lasted over 30 years and continues to remain strong.

But how did they do it? As we all know, marriage is not easy.

When asked what they believe helped their marriage through rough patches, Brooke responded, “First and foremost, what has been the best thing for our marriage is our faith.  Without God we would have given up a long time ago.  There were times I thought about calling it quits but God opened my eyes to the things I loved about him.  Lucien has taught me that it is ok to let things go.  I held on to a grudge, but his love for me convinced me that it all works out in the end. ”

She went on to say, “We try to speak each other’s language, I need time together, to talk and have his undivided attention.  He loves it when I remember his favorite snack or make his favorite dinner. We still crack each other up!  As a matter of fact, we usually try to find a mini-golf course for some fierce competition on our anniversary, he wins more often but I always give him a run for his money.  In a day and age where we are all about our rights, and having our needs met, marriage is about having our needs met AND meeting the needs of your other half.”

God must have had a plan for these two love birds, according to Brook. She shared that her mother gave her a scrapbook that she had kept throughout her schooling and in it was a Christmas program from when Lucien was in third grade. He was listed as a soloist and behind him….you guessed it! Brooke was there as one of the dancing dolls.

Lucien and Brooke met in the old Waynesville Junior High building 37 years ago. Although the building is being demolished, the Rivard’s will forever hold onto their memories of when they fell in love.