Hundreds attended a grand spectacle of love on Valentine’s Day, watching 100 couples marry and renew their vows on the roof of Manhattan’s Empire State Building.
Among them were neighbors Antoinette Deliso, 80, and her husband Anthony Deliso, 86, who live in Borough Park and had come to renew their vows for the fourth time in nearly 60 years.
Decked in a long fur coat and holding a bouquet of white flowers, Antoinette joked that she had cold feet, but only due to the freezing temperatures. Anthony, looking dapper in a sleek suit, was incredulous when his son reminded him that it was on Valentine’s Day, exactly 60 years ago, that he became a United States citizen.
It was around that time that he met Antoinette, having just completed his military service in Korea. Both are from the same town of Mola Dibari in Italy, where their families had been neighbors, but their lives didn’t intersect until one fateful evening at a mutual friend’s wedding.
“It’s a long story; you won’t believe it,” Antoinette tells us with a laugh. The first time Anthony laid eyes on her, he came over to her family’s table at the wedding reception and said hi. By the next mutual friend’s wedding, he had worked up the courage to ask Antoinette for a dance. But how Anthony convinced Antoinette’s old-fashioned father to allow him to take her out for a movie is indeed a long, complicated story for another time.
Long story short, Anthony and Antoinette were married 10 months later.
“And, thank God, we were together all these years,” Antoinette concludes. “We have three beautiful children, four beautiful grandchildren – one is a lawyer, one is an architect, and my granddaughter goes to Bishop Kearney.”
After the ceremony, which was met by enthusiastic applause from onlookers, the lovebirds and their large brood went out for dinner. Everywhere they went, the beaming couple was asked what their secret was.
“Communication,” says Anthony.
Antoinette agrees, “Sometimes we have a little fight, but if I’m right, I’m right, if I’m wrong, I’m wrong. Then we kiss and everything is fine.”
Their son Vito, who recently celebrated his own 30th anniversary, tells us he credits the success of his marriage to his parents, who, after 60 years together, are still very much in love. “If you watch the video, they have tears coming out of their eyes.”
In fact, even the woman officiating the ceremony got a little choked up. See the beautiful moment for yourself: