Childhood friends celebrate 60 years |

Childhood friends celebrate 60 years

Nancy Oliver Hayden, Tribune Community Editor

Jim Grant/Tahoe Daily TribuneCandy and Alice Rosalez proudly display the American flag that was flown over the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 27, their 60th wedding anniversary, as well as the card of congratulations from President George Bush and first lady Laura Bush.

Alice M. and Candelario “Candy” Rosalez Jr. were in for a big surprise when what they thought was a house warming party for their granddaughter was really a surprise party in honor of their 60th wedding anniversary.

The anniversary celebration was hosted by the couple’s children, Juanita Perez, Margaret and Raul Agundez, Candy Rey, Tina Hokanson and Cliff Rosalez on Jan. 25 at the Veterans of Foreign Wars Hall in Antioch, Calif. They were assisted by grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nephews and nieces. The party, which was attended by 280 people, included a sit-down dinner, dancing, an anniversary cake and a special champagne toast to their 60 years of marriage. The hall was decorated with flowers, steamers and balloons.

And added surprise was when they were presented with an American flag that had been flown over the United States Capitol on Jan. 27 for Candelario and Alice Rosalez at the request of the Honorable George Miller, Member of Congress. A few days later they received in the mail a card from The White House, Washington, D.C., signed by President George Bush and first lady Laura Bush.

“We are pleased to send our best wishes and congratulations on your anniversary. Your long-standing marriage reflects the beauty and strength of a steadfast commitment and is an inspiration to those around you. May your future be filled with happiness.”

The Rosalezes were married Jan. 27, 1943, at the Washoe County Courthouse in Reno, Nev. They made the trip to Reno on a military railroad train from Pittsburg, Calif., where they both were raised. They have known each other since they were 10 years old and attended elementary school together.

A few months after their wedding, Candy, who has joined the Navy earlier in the year, left for his tour of duty. His wife and baby daughter, who was born while he was serving his country, stayed with his parents until his discharge on New Year’s Day 1946.

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The Rosalez family lived in Pittsburg until 1968, where Candy was employed by United States Steel Corp. and Alice was a homemaker. They have owned property at South Lake Tahoe since 1947, and moved to the area when Candy retired. Throughout the years he has worked in several positions including licensed contractor and house mover, maintenance manager for South Y Shopping Center, maintenance supervisor at The Outdoorsman from 1976 to 1980 and bilingual counselor for the El Dorado County Hispanic Service Center. He currently operates his own business, Hispanic Service Center, where he is an interpreter, translator and immigration and legal consultant. Alice has continued to enjoy her role as homemaker, wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother.

The couple both are active at St. Theresa Catholic Church and enjoy traveling, especially to visit their family in the San Francisco Bay Area. Candy is a member of the American Legion Post and Veterans of Foreign Wars.