Harvest residents Dale and Jane Revell recently celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary. Together, they have literally done it all. Their incredible journey includes 16 relocations, 14 homes, seven motorcycles, two children, six grandchildren, traveling across the world, and beating cancer.
Dale and Jane’s love story began at a liberal arts college in Michigan. After graduation, Dale took a job with the Ford Motor Credit Company and quickly climbed the corporate ladder. Each step sent their family to a new location: Nova Scotia, Canada, Florida, and about a dozen more.
“We knew the moves were going to be a lot, and every place we went was a new adventure,” Jane said.
While living in Buffalo, NY at the age of 34, Dale was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin lymphoma, a cancer that starts in the white blood cells. He went through chemotherapy and radiation but never went into remission.
“They came to us and said if we wanted him to live five more years, he needed a bone marrow transplant,” Jane said. “In 1991, Dale became one of the earliest experimental stem cell transplant patients.”
The Revells prayed for five more years, but the Lord had more in store for them. Next October will be 30 years since the transplant and 36 years cancer-free.
“We thank the Lord every day,” Dale said.
As a way to give back, Dale and Jane became bone marrow and stem cell couriers through the national program, Be the Match.
“We flew all over the world picking up stem cells and bone marrow to deliver it to people waiting for transplants,” Jane said. “We did 43 trips in three years.”
In 2015, Dale and Jane made one more move to Texas to be closer to their son and his family. They have plugged into a church family, they volunteer, and stay active together. They love to travel, go on cruises, and they walk their neighborhood daily.
“It hasn’t always been easy. It’s been a rough road many times,” Jane said. “But, we asked the Lord to use us, and I believe our faith is what has helped us reach the 50th anniversary mark.”
One might assume after five decades together, travels and moves, children and work, and the emotional roller coaster of beating non-Hodgkin lymphoma, that Dale and Jane hold the key to a long-lasting marriage. But Dale said the secret to marriage is that there is no secret. As long as there is respect and love, you figure it out along the way.
Dale and Jane are currently working on a book about their life together, a token to pass down to their grandchildren, titled, “My Life is a Journey.” The book will document Dale’s cancer, their years of marriage, and all of their adventures along the way.
photos courtesy of Dale Revell