Couple sets sail on their own love boat

This cruise was supposed to be just for the ladies.

Lynne Frank of Palo Alto had signed up for a 30-day cruise in January 2007 with two of her girlfriends. Her husband had died four years earlier, and she was excited for an opportunity to travel on her own.

Within days of arriving on the ship, she met Ron Page. And everything changed.

Ron Page and Lynne Frank

“Lo and behold, he was sitting at my dinner table,” Lynne recalled. “And as they say, the rest is history.”

They hit it off immediately. Ron, also a widower, lived in Sunnyvale. Lynne lived just 16 miles away.

“Can you imagine?” Lynne said. “We’re the same age, and as kids, we both lived in San Francisco at the same time. He sold newspapers at the corner grocery store near my home. But we didn’t know each other. He went to Lincoln High School, and I went to Balboa.”

On the cruise, they started having breakfast together every morning, and dinner together every night. “By the end of the month, it was a done deal,” Lynne said.

They saw each other nearly every day upon returning to the Bay Area. By December 2007, Ron had moved into Lynne’s retirement community.

And even though Lynne has had some health problems lately, they have taken five cruises together, with number six coming up later this summer: a 49-day grand excursion with ports of call including Iceland, Norway, and Morocco. After reaching Africa, they’ll embark on two-week safari.

As for falling in love on a ship, Lynne said, “I never expected it — it was the furthest thing from my mind. I’m very social, I have a lot of friends and I’m busy all the time, but that doesn’t really make you complete. You keep yourself busy because you don’t want to be alone.”

Lynne, 67, had not imagined getting married again. In fact, when she first met Ron, 69, she told him she’d never marry again. But by the following November, in 2008, Page was ready to seal the deal.

“Ron told me he thought we’d be happier if he could call me his wife, which I thought was pretty romantic,” Lynne said.

Still, she didn’t give him an answer right away. First she consulted with her friends and family. “Why get married? At my age?” she asked.

And they told her, “Well, why not? He loves you, you love him, you’re living like a married couple, why not make it official?”

They were married Jan. 11, 2009, in an intimate ceremony at the Hillsborough home of Lynne’s niece.

Something old: They had a single-ring ceremony, and when Ron said his vows, he put Lynne’s father’s wedding ring onto her finger.

“I wasn’t going to get a wedding ring,” she said. “It wasn’t important to us, but the sentiment was. My parents had a long and happy marriage, and we thought it would be good luck for us.”

Something new: Lynne wore a new skirt she bought in Hawaii on a cruise with Ron before she knew they would get married. “I hung it up until I had the right occasion to wear it,” she said. “I thought it was perfect. Black and silver and white.”

Something borrowed: The couple stood under a chuppah made from Lynne’s grandfather’s tallit. “That was really special,” she said.

Something Jew(ish): The couple was married by a cruise ship rabbi, Rabbi Chuck Mentz, whom they met a few months before they got married.

And even though Ron is not Jewish, the couple had a Jewish wedding ceremony that culminated by Ron breaking the glass. “Ron isn’t religious, but he thought the Jewish ceremony was beautiful,” Lynne said.

Unions features a recently married couple with an interesting story. If you want to share your tale, or want to nominate a couple married within the last year, contact [email protected].

Stacey Palevsky

Stacey Palevsky is a former J. staff writer.