Girls Auto Clinic: Empowering Women One Car at a Time

Girls Auto Clinic: Empowering Women One Car at a Time

In a tale that spans decades and continents, Harold Terens, a 100-year-old World War II veteran, is set to marry his 96-year-old fiancée, Jeanne Swerlin, near the historic beaches of Normandy, France. This remarkable event comes 80 years after Terens first set foot in France as a young corporal in the U.S. Army Air Forces, shortly after the D-Day landings that marked a turning point in the war.

Terens and Swerlin, who have been dating since 2021, share a youthful spirit and a love for dancing. Their affection for each other is evident as they talk about their upcoming wedding, with Terens declaring, “I love this girl — she is quite special.” The couple even demonstrated their fondness for dancing by grooving to “Uptown Funk” by Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars, showcasing their energy and zest for life.

During World War II, Terens played a crucial role in the aftermath of D-Day, repairing planes that had returned from France so they could rejoin the battle. He vividly recalls the mixed emotions of the time, with German prisoners of war relieved to have survived and American POWs bearing the scars of brutal treatment by their Nazi captors.

In late May, Terens, Swerlin, and their families will travel to Paris, where Terens and a few other surviving World War II veterans will be honored as part of the 80th-anniversary celebration of France’s liberation from the Nazis. This will be Terens’ fourth D-Day celebration in France, where he previously received a medal from President Emmanuel Macron.

The wedding is planned for June 8 in the town of Carentan-les-Marais, in a chapel dating back to the 1600s. Mayor Jean-Pierre Lhonneur, who noted the strong bond between the region and the United States due to the sacrifices made on D-Day, expressed his eagerness to officiate the ceremony. “Normandy is the 51st state,” he remarked, highlighting the deep gratitude felt by the French towards the American liberators.

The mayor is hopeful that an exception will be made to allow him to marry the couple, despite the legal requirement that only town residents can be wed in Carentan-les-Marais. “It will be a pleasure for us,” he said, underscoring the special significance of this union.

This upcoming wedding is not just a celebration of love between two nonagenarians; it’s a poignant reminder of the enduring connections forged in the crucible of war and the power of love to transcend time and history.