WINDSOR, ONT. -- A Windsor husband and wife who both suffer from memory loss are renewing their 73-year-old wedding vows like it’s the first time they are getting married.

For 73 years, Evelyn and Al Hillman have had a grip on each other. On Saturday, they renewed their vows in front of family, their first gathering since the pandemic started.

When the idea of renewing their vows came up, Evelyn and Al thought they'd make a good couple, according to their son James Hillman.

“My mom would say to him ‘I think we should get married,’” says James. “She had no idea they were already married. There was many times during this process where they thought they were getting married for the first time.”

The couple was married on July 23, 1948 their love has stood the test of time. The Hillman's have five children, 10 grandchildren and nine great grandchildren.

Al says he was drawn by Evelyn's outlook on life, attitude and pleasant nature.

“I used to work in a drug store when I was a teenager and she used to visit,” says Al. “And then I got more visits and more visits and pretty soon I had to marry her. Get off my back.”

The good natured humour has gotten the Hillman's through many challenges in life, including the pandemic.

“My dad went through COVID and he survived it and it actually brought him back to my mom a lot quicker,” says James.

Evelyn has been in a retirement home for four years but Al always managed to visit.

They both have dementia but that didn't stop Al when he became a resident in the same home in June following his battle with COVID.

“I guess they were looking for him and there he was,” says Brenda MacKinnon. “He found his way which was a different hallway, different wing to my mother like a homing pigeon I always say.”

Their love rose above all on Saturday as the Hillman's sealed the deal with a kiss.

“It was great,” says Al. “Reminded me of years ago when I first thought about getting married. It was wonderful.”