It was love at first sight for On Lok Lifeways participants, Wei Yumei and Wu Quanhai, who will celebrate their 56th wedding anniversary in March.
Their story began in China in the early 1960’s. They were both teachers at the same school – teaching adult education. Wei first saw her future husband at the school playing volleyball, and she felt an immediate attraction. One day, Wu asked Wei to check out one of his volleyball games. When she arrived at the game, their mutual attraction became obvious to everyone around them. Their co-workers saw the spark and even they knew there was something special between Wei and Wu.
A year passed by and Wei was transferred to a different school. Though they had no way to communicate privately, there were occasional school movie events that allowed them to meet up. One day, Wei bought a movie ticket for Wu in advance of their reunion. Little did she know that Wu had also bought her a movie ticket. At that moment something clicked – and they knew they were meant for each other.
A year later, the pair decided to get married. They were very poor and didn’t have new clothes to wear on their wedding day, so they wore the best they had in their closets. They had a simple wedding at the school with a few co-workers around them. On their wedding night, they put two flat boards together in a classroom and spent the night. For 12 years, they lived at separate schools and walked 8 miles each way to see each other on weekends.
As time passed, their journey eventually brought them to America, where they settled in Fremont, Calif. Unfortunately, Wu was involved in a serious car accident shortly thereafter and his injuries required ongoing care. They were faced with two options: have a caregiver come to their home or join the On Lok Lifeways Peralta PACE Center in Fremont. Instead of staying at home, Wu decided to join On Lok Lifeways where he would receive physical therapy and medical care. He was also able to partake in activities that kept him active and social. Thanks to all the help Wu received at On Lok Lifeways, he is now fully recovered.
Wei and Wu still visit the On Lok Lifeways Peralta PACE Center almost every day. They love spending time with their 4 children and 4 grandchildren, and they also enjoy exercising, surfing the internet and learning at least two new words in English every day.
Wu enjoys going on walks with his wife and loves to hear her sing. Wei loves that her husband is a hard worker and never gets upset, but beyond that, he’s the most honest person she knows. They don’t have any plans for Valentine’s Day because, for this happy couple, every single day seems like Valentine’s Day.