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A tale of love and Lake Grove

Childhood friends reconnect through Facebook and marry

by: SUBMITTED PHOTO - Greg and Lora Fitzhugh (nee Martinez) married earlier this month at Lake Grove Elementary School, where they first met.“I promise to walk by your side forever as your best friend, your lover and your soul mate, and you are the love of my life.”

So begin the wedding vows of Lora Martinez and Greg Fitzhugh, who married this July at Lake Grove Elementary School, where they met 42 years ago. Facebook played a key part in their reunion and tells much of their love story, though not the early years, which are captured in golden memories.by: SUBMITTED PHOTO - Lora Fitzhugh (Martinez) just married the boy she first met in fourth grade.

Martinez and Fitzhugh met in fourth grade, probably in the Lake Grove playground under a big fir tree, she recalls, and they lived in the same neighborhood. Fitzhugh used to ride his bike back and forth in front of her house.

“He says he’s always had a crush on me; I didn’t realize it was as strong as it was,” she says.by: SUBMITTED PHOTO - Greg Fitzhugh has had a crush on his new wife since they were kids.

Fitzhugh was fond of other family members as well, becoming pals with Martinez’s little brother and often pedaling down to Lake Oswego Village Drug, where her grandmother, Opal Shalberg, worked. He grew close to Shalberg, saying she was a dear lady who once helped him purchase a gift for his mom.

After attending Lake Oswego Junior High together, Martinez and Fitzhugh moved on to Lake Oswego High. They ended up dating, but it wasn’t serious. Then he joined the Army, where he stayed for six years, and the couple lost touch.

Meanwhile, they made lives for themselves. She has three children from a previous marriage, one of whom gifted her with two grandchildren, and Fitzhugh has an 11-year-old son. But Martinez and Fitzhugh say they thought about each other often throughout the years, and fate and Facebook reconnected them.

Friending each other on Facebook last summer, they messaged back and forth and then met for coffee in January at a restaurant in Beaverton; at the time, she lived in Canada and had been visiting family for Christmas. Though they’re older now, when they met again, it seemed as if nothing had changed.

“It was a great surprise. It was like there had been no time in between,” Martinez says. “For three or four hours, we sat in the restaurant and talked.”

On June 14, the couple announced their relationship on Facebook.

After their July 2 wedding at Lake Grove — she in a skirt and sweater, he in a dress shirt and jeans — they lunched at the Giant Drive In across the street.

“That’s where we always went after school,” Martinez says.

That evening, she announced their nuptials on her Facebook timeline. Fitzhugh did the same, writing “Love you Lora!!!” on her page.

Fitzhugh took time off from his job at a shipyard in Portland and Martinez found someone to watch the kids while they honeymooned in Lincoln City, returning a couple weeks ago. Soon after, she updated her Facebook page with a new name: Lora Fitzhugh.

Both now have settled in Tigard, but, on Facebook, their hometown’s still Lake Oswego.

And just as LO always will be their hometown, it seems they always will belong to one another. As the last line of their vows reads, “I promise to be yours and only yours forever and ever and for all eternity.”

By Jillian Daley
503-636-1281, ext. 109
email: jdaley@lakeoswegoreview.com
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