Tyler and Erica Turner and Rhett    Ann-Margret Images

Tori and Eric Gengenbach and family   Alee Photography

Glenn and Shelly Williams and family    contributed photo

Sharon and Gary Talich and family     MaKenzi’s Photography

Love endures through the ages

EDITOR’S NOTE: In celebration of Valentine’s Day, the Tribune is featuring four Grant couples who have been married for different lengths of time. Have a Happy Valentine’s Day! 

By Brooke Pankonin

Grant Tribune Sentinel

1 year—Erica and Tyler

Erica (Rhodes) and Tyler Turner celebrated one year of marital bliss on May 30, 2016. 

They met in the summer of 2012 at the Windy Gap in Paxton. Their first date followed not too long after. 

“Tyler asked me out to a movie in Ogallala. His choice of movie? Madagascar,” Erica said. 

Tyler said that was his only choice. But it must not have been a deal breaker, because afterwards they went to the Pheasant Run Golf Club in Grant and spent more time together.

After dating for two years, the couple got engaged in the summer of 2014 and were married May 30, 2015 in Ogallala.

The couple has one son, Rhett, 10 months. They enjoy watching movies, playing with their son and two dogs, and going to sporting events.

Tyler is a farmer and Erica teaches fifth and sixth grade language arts and reading at Perkins County Schools.

10 years—Tori and Eric

Grant native Eric Gengenbach met Oklahoman Tori (Segner) Gengenbach during their second year of college at Oklahoma State University. 

“He moved from the front of our organic chemistry class to the back to sit by me. I have probably been a bad influence ever since,” said Tori.

The couple’s first date was dinner and a movie the weekend after Valentine’s Day. Tori recalls being disappointed he didn’t ask her out for Valentine’s Day, but he was watching his nephew for his brother so he could take his wife out on a date. 

Eric proposed the same place he first told Tori he loved her, to which she replied with an immediate, “Yes!” 

They got married July 15, 2006 in Tulsa, Oklahoma, having a second reception in Grant the following month. 

“We were lucky. We got to celebrate twice, with a ton of friends in both places,” said Tori. 

The couple has three girls, Olivia, 7, Bella, 4, and Abigail, 2, and they are expecting their fourth child in August. 

They enjoy cooking and golfing together, and generally have a good time when they can escape by themselves. 

Both Tori and Eric work as optometrists at First Insight Eyecare, although they don’t usually work in the same office. The couple owns the business, with offices in Grant, Ogallala, Imperial and North Platte. 

30+ Years—Shelly and Glenn

Shelly (Green) and Glenn Williams met at Cassels restaurant in Ogallala, where Glenn was a cook and Shelly was a waitress. Shelly recalls their first date was probably “cruising” after work. 

“We just decided we wanted to get married and set the date!” Shelly said on getting engaged. They were married on Sept. 29, 1984 at her parents’ house in Ogallala. 

They have three kids and nine grandkids: Chris and wife Cori and kids Tristen, Brandon, Maya and Leon; Justin and kids Callie, Kane and Kooper; and Jarrod and wife Karith and kids Domanic and Spencer.

The couple enjoys riding their motorcycle together. 

“We like to just take off and go find a place to camp or stay wherever we want.” 

Shelly works at Kids Korner, a local daycare, and Glenn works at Frenchman Valley Coop.

50 Years—Sharon and Gary

High school sweethearts Sharon (Benzel) and Gary Talich met in typing class at Sidney High School in 1962. On Dec. 21 of that year, they went on their first date to a high school dance. 

Three years later, they were engaged, getting married eight months later on Aug. 21, 1966 at Trinity Lutheran Church in Sidney. 

They have two children and four grandchilden: Renee Seiler and husband Sam and kids Austin, 17 and Aryn, 15; and Lance and wife Shannon and kids Brandon, 9, and Mackenzie, 3. 

The couple enjoys fishing, camping, traveling, gardening and spending time with family. 

Gary is retired as a branch manager at Frenchman Valley Coop, and Sharon is retired as a para- educator at Perkins County Schools. 

The Grant Tribune-Sentinel

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