Chicago couple together for 26 years marries on Valentine's Day

CHICAGO (WLS) -- When Leticia and Jose came into the Cook County Clerk's office to get married, they had no idea they were about to make history.

"This is a brand new tradition for this office to marry somebody on Valentine's Day," Cook County Clerk Karen Yarbrough said.

So with flowers and plenty of other donated goodies at the ready, the lucky couple from Brighton Park who have been together for 26 years said their wedding vows.

They're no newbies to love. Jose is 69 and Leticia is 72 and they own a screen printing shop together. So why did it take nearly three decades to put a ring on it?

"Just wanted to make sure," Jose Raygoza said, laughing.

Whatever the reason is, on this Valentine's Day, love prevails.

"I waited a long time," Leticia Vargas said. "Glad it finally came. I was very patient."

Here's another twist to the story: the clerk's office had picked another couple to get married from those who entered the first-ever contest to win a free wedding. But that couple - much younger - got cold feet. So when they didn't show up, Jose and Leticia walked in - and the rest is history.
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