Westborough couple celebrates lifelong love story

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By Dakota Antelman, Managing Editor

Westborough residents Earl and Connie Hutt recently celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary. This is a photo from their wedding day.
Westborough residents Earl and Connie Hutt recently celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary.

WESTBOROUGH – A dining room full of strangers at Arturo’s Ristorante cheered as Connie Hutt, her husband Earl, and their extended family toasted a milestone 70th wedding anniversary, last month. 

For Connie and Earl, the dinner was a surprise organized to celebrate what has been a lifelong love story. 

“It was just such a joyful time of all getting together and chatting and catching up,” Hutt said of the dinner in a recent interview. 

 

The son of the coal truck driver

Connie, 90, and Earl, 94, grew up in Westborough in an era when the town had just a few thousand people in it. 

The community was especially tight-knit in those days, giving Connie the sense that she was at least acquainted with everyone she ran into. 

“Whether you knew their name or not, you kind of knew their identities in some way,” she said. 

To Connie, Earl was the son of the local coal truck driver, riding along from time to time when his father dropped off fuel to feed the coal-powered furnaces that heated many homes in those pre-World War II days. 

In time, Earl also became the boyfriend of one of Connie’s closest friends. 

The two got to know each other as acquaintances and friends over the years, creating a unique situation when Earl and Connie’s friend broke up. 

“I thought, ‘Well, I’m not dating anybody, maybe I should look into this,’” Connie recalled. 

 

Train trips and rides home

Earl was attending day school in Boston at the time, meaning he regularly took a 5 p.m. train into Westborough’s downtown station at the end of the day.

Though Earl lived just three blocks from the station, Connie drove to the station one day to offer him a ride home. He obliged.

“That was our first encounter,” Connie said.

Earl continued to get rides home from Connie from time to time after that first trip. From there, the two worked to stay in touch despite circumstances that limited opportunities to do so. 

Connie ended up attending boarding school for several years, meaning she was only available over Christmas vacation and a handful of weekends during the school year. During the summer, her family spent time on Cape Cod. 

“There wasn’t very much dating going on for a while,” Connie said. 

Then came college. 

 

Date nights and country drives

Connie studied at Wheelock College just as Earl finished his education at the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy. 

Earl later went into the workforce as Connie finished her own schooling. Employed at a local drugstore, he made a point to drive back into Boston on his biweekly Sundays off for date-night dinners and countryside drives. 

In time, the two married and had kids, enjoying lives in Westborough as well as their lasting marriage. 

 

Anniversary family dinner

Seven decades into that marriage, Connie said she and Earl knew their children and grandchildren would be visiting for both their anniversary on June 16 and for Father’s Day on June 20. However, Connie said she had few details on any particular plans.

“We’ve learned just to leave those things alone and let them blossom naturally,” she said. 

The surprise, indeed, blossomed with that dinner at Arturo’s. 

Roughly a dozen family members gathered around a large table. Connie’s sister drove down from Vermont with balloons in the shape of the number 70. At one point, the family toasted the anniversary.

“The whole dining room was kind of smiling and lifting their glasses and that was such a surprise,” Hutt said of that moment.

Celebrating Connie and Earl’s anniversary, the family stuck around in town for a Father’s Day backyard lobster bake.

Coming out of COVID-19 and reflecting on a long life of family and community closeness, Connie said she was extremely happy.

“It was a very special week of togetherness,” she said.