Couple Married 75 Years Now Famous Due to Hurricanes

Harvey and Irma Schluter have the same first names as the 2 recent hurricanes
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 8, 2017 7:55 AM CDT
This Harvey and Irma Bring Smiles, Not Fear and Chaos
Sweet.   (Getty Images/jacoblund)

Some longtime married couples become famous for visiting Cracker Barrels; others make headlines because they share names with back-to-back hurricanes. The latter is the case for Harvey and Irma Schluter, who've been wed for 75 years and were surprised to see Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma threatening to wreak havoc across the US one right after the other. "I don't know how that worked out," 92-year-old Irma marvels to the New York Times. Here's how: Tropical storms and hurricanes born in the Atlantic used to be given female names only, but that "sexist" system was changed in 1979, per the Times. Six master lists of names rotate, and Irene has always come after Harvey. But especially costly or deadly storms have their names retired, so Irene was iced after 2011's Hurricane Irene and Irma took her place.

The humans Harvey, now 104, and Irma are a much more pleasant topic. They met while Irma was still in high school, and she was reluctant to date the much-older Harvey—but he talked her into getting married in 1942, before she was even out of high school. The Spokesman-Review recently posted a story on their 75th wedding anniversary, including the fact that the couple has taken in more than 120 foster children over the years, many of them disabled. "They're the most loving, wonderful, giving people I know," one of those children, now 47, tells the paper about the pair, who also had two children of their own. But while they're seeing their names linked to hurricanes, the Schluters are actually holed up at home in Washington state to keep away from the smoke from another natural disaster: the Pacific Northwest wildfires. (More Hurricane Harvey stories.)

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