Couple together for 84 years believed to be Arkansas' longest-married couple

Published: Sep. 27, 2023 at 1:32 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KATV) – The longest-married couple in Arkansas is being celebrated by the state’s Family Council.

Cleovis and Arwilda Whiteside have been married for more than 80 years. The 102-year-old Cleovis and 98-year-old Arwilda were wed in 1939, and the two credit God as the reason for their success in maintaining their relationship all the time since then.

“We can hardly believe this is happening to us because we feel like we were the least, but God said, ‘No. You’ll glorify my name and love one another,’” Arwilda Whiteside said.

The couple share 12 children, many of whom were in attendance for the past weekend’s fish fry celebration in Pine Bluff.

The couple was honored with performances and a presentation of awards by the Family Council of Arkansas.

Charisse Dean, project coordinator at Arkansas Family Council, said the organization believes the Whitesides may be America’s longest-married couple.

“We’re a nonprofit organization and we promote and protect traditional family values and we can’t think of any better way to promote traditional family values than to celebrate the Whiteside’s 84 years of marriage that has been God-centered,” Dean said.

Loved ones shared their memories and well wishes for the couple. Many said the Whitesides were a staple in their lives and helped them to become the people they are today.

The Whitesides shared gratitude for everyone who showed up on the special day.

“May God bless you and I thank you for being here today, every one of you,” Cleovis Whiteside said to the people at the event.