Life for Mr. Potenzano had turn out to be “a state of isolation,” he mentioned. “When it lasted lengthy sufficient, I considered different individuals who had been lonely. And guess who got here to thoughts?” By 2022, he had satisfied himself to ask Ms. Elkind for a date. That fall at a christening for a brand new great-great niece, he requested Ms. Elkind if she wish to have espresso or lunch someday, simply the 2 of them.
Ms. Elkind was shocked. However “I all the time used to say to myself, ‘I want Joe would ask me out,’” she mentioned. “So when he did, I used to be very joyful.” That November, as a substitute of espresso, they attended an Irish dance efficiency on the Mayo Performing Arts Middle in Morristown, N.J., with two of Mr. Potenzano’s nieces. “It was great,” Ms. Elkind mentioned of the present. It was romantic too: He held her hand.
Over the subsequent few months, they fell in like to a soundtrack of Frank Sinatra and Tony Bennett. “I’m on the age the place my voice is sort of a foghorn,” Mr. Potenzano mentioned. However karaoke at his home turned a favourite exercise. “We like to sing,” Ms. Elkind mentioned. She doesn’t hear a foghorn when Mr. Potenzano picks up the mic: “He has a wonderful voice,” she mentioned.
Mr. Potenzano proposed this summer time whereas they had been sitting on his couch. “Do you suppose we should always get married?” he mentioned. Earlier than that second, she wasn’t positive. After Mr. Elkind had died, “if anybody requested if I assumed I’d ever get married once more, I mentioned no,” she mentioned. However “Joe’s a beautiful man.” She mentioned sure.
On Oct. 15, Ms. Elkind and Mr. Potenzano had been married at Our Girl of the Visitation Roman Catholic Church in Paramus by the Rev. Antonio L. da Silva, a Roman Catholic priest. Company included 90 close-knit family and friends members. Ms. Elkind wore a ground size champagne-colored costume, and Mr. Potenzano donned a navy blue go well with.
They honeymooned in Woodloch Pines, a resort in Hawley, Pa. Ms. Elkind spends most of her time in Paramus, however is holding her apartment in Chestnut Ridge. “We’ll use that as an escape,” she mentioned. However not from one another. “We plan to benefit from the years we now have left,” Mr. Potenzano mentioned.
“I really feel so blessed,” Ms. Elkind mentioned.
“Ditto,” Mr. Potenzano added.