GOOD NEWS MATTERS: Arkansas centenarian credits faith, hope, trust for long life, marriage of nearly 82 years

Good News Matters

WHITE HALL, Ark. – Arkansan Cleovis Whiteside celebrates his 100th birthday this weekend. He’ll celebrate alongside his wife of almost 82 years.

Arwilda and Cleovis Whiteside met at church in Clarendon and married in 1939. He was 17 and she was 13. They went on to have 12 children.

The couple says the key to a happy marriage is faith and putting God in the center.

“Prayer. Prayer is the key to a marriage,” Arwilda Whiteside said. “You have to have faith, you’ve got to have hope and you’ve got to have trust. And God. Put God first.”

They instilled that faith in their children and grandchildren.

“We tried by the grace and mercy of God to teach our children how to love one another and how to respect one another,” Arwilda said.

They have made a difference for so many in the the state as they dedicated their lives to giving back and serving. Their advice for married couples?

“The Bible. The Bible is your lifeline,” Arwilda said.

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