A kiss is still a kiss

Photo by Danny Fulgencio

CC Young residents Paul and Clara Harris share a love story that’s withstood the test of time. It wasn’t long after they met in 1949 that they had to overcome that initial test — the first date. “She liked my brother-in-law more than me on the first date,” Paul says of their dinner with his sister and her husband. “But he was taken, so that left me.” 

In spite of that, Paul, 100, and Clara, 90, discovered they had a lot in common. Both employees for Dallas ISD, they met while Clara was working as a rotating speech therapist at Davy Crockett School. Yet it was a year before Paul decided to ask Clara on a date. As the school’s principal, he thought it would be ill advised to date single teachers. But because Clara was only working at Davy Crockett two days a week, he decided to make an exception. 

Nine months after they started dating, the Harrises were married on an unseasonably hot day in June at Denton’s Little Chapel in the Woods. “We leaned a lot on each other,” Clara says. “We loved our kids. We had fun, and that’s what helps get you through the hard times. It’s been a really good life.”—Jaime Dunaway

Photo by Andrea Murry

Katie and Kevin Badger have quite a few similarities. They have the same birthday. Their childhood dogs have the same name. Their younger siblings are best friends.

Not to mention they were neighbors growing up on Dartridge Drive. 

But Katie and Kevin weren’t even friends until her family visited Kevin at West Point when he was 20 and she was 16. The two became pen pals after the trip, and he attended Katie’s high school graduation. A summer romance sparked but quickly dwindled after Katie went away to college. 

Their lives didn’t intersect again for decades. They both married other people who they later divorced. Kevin was deployed four times during his 23-year U.S. Army career. Katie periodically checked his Facebook to make sure he was OK, but they hadn’t talked.

Seeing that he had Facebook messaged her in 2015 was a shock. “I had not heard his voice or seen him in 20 years,” she says. She let the message sit in her inbox for weeks. Her younger sister begged her to respond. 

After they messaged for three or four months, they finally agreed to meet. “When this happened, it was an instant connection,” Katie says.

They married in June 2017.

Michelle and Chris Dishman became fast friends after meeting in Lake Highlands High School’s choir. Their junior year, Chris Dishman asked Michelle on a date with this note: “As soon as I get my license, I’m going to take you out.” 

He and Michelle started dating as soon as he got his first car. But the transition from friends to sweethearts was awkward. “It was weird when we started dating,” Michelle says. “We went out. We were like, ‘We can’t do this.’ Then we missed each other and got back together.”

The two were partners in Espree and attended prom together. Then, in college, they broke up. The separation was once again short-lived.

Their junior year of college, they headed home to Lake Highlands for an Espree performance. While out to dinner, Chris gave Michelle the performance program. Inside was their prom photo and a poem about marriage. He tucked the ring inside his boot.  She said yes. 

The Dishmans have been married for 27 years. “He’s honestly the love-of-my-life amazing,” Michelle says. “We are so lucky it worked out for us. It doesn’t normally work out for high school kids.”