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Published: Wednesday, 11/9/2005

Sylvania: Devotion marks 67th anniversary

BY MIKE JONES
BLADE STAFF WRITER

Lou Pertcheck has been retired for about a year now, but he's up at 4 each morning, after maybe five hours of sleep, to head toward Arbors at Sylvania, where he now spends his days.

Mr. Pertcheck, 90, is there "when the facility opens'' at 7 a.m.

"He stays until 8 or 9 each night," tending to the needs of his wife, Pearl, who suffered a stroke about a year ago, said Lynne Radecki, activities director.

But he doesn't see his devotion as a hardship or a duty - simply a part of a marriage which, today, marks its 67th anniversary.

"I'm not going to give her up now,'' he said, referring to his wife who, despite problems stemming from the stroke, takes physical therapy at the center and remains alert and well-groomed.

In many ways he and his wife are simply continuing a close companionship which at one time was primarily at their home near Toledo Hospital.

Mr. Pertcheck worked for about 70 years as a watchmaker and watch repairman in his home.

His work bench is sitting with its tools in his basement. "I could go back to work right now, but I don't think I ever will,'' he said.

Mr. Pertcheck said the bulk of his work over the years came from local jewelry stores that couldn't afford to hire a watch repairman full time but wanted to provide a repair service for customers.

"I would go pick up the watches from the different stores, bring them back, and pick up the next batch of watches which needed repairs,'' he said.

Both he and his wife maintained healthy habits over the years and were particularly interested in exercise.

He said there were times he would be working in the basement and hear a thump from upstairs and know his wife had dropped a dumbbell.

They both walked and had a routine of circling the large basement until they had walked a mile or a little more, three times a week.

Mrs. Pertcheck smiled as her husband recalled those incidents and again when he said that when he visits, "I do whatever she needs. Whatever she tells me.''

The celebration of their anniversary today, he said, is the idea of the staff at Arbors of Sylvania "We don't really want anything fancy,'' he said.

Mrs. Radecki said she is aware of the couple's desire for a simple observance but added that the staff wanted to do something to mark what she said is the devotion both continue to show after a long marriage.



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