This is one of those stories that remind us of the power of the first love. No matter how much time passes and what life brings, that one person who made you feel butterflies in your stomach for the first time ever will always have a special place in your heart.
KT Robins is a 97-year-old World War II veteran who happened to be serving in the small French town of Briey back in 1944. That is when he first spotted the stunning young lady named Jeannine Ganaye. Now years after they first met and fell in love with one another, the couple is reunited.
The touching reunion that melted the hearts not only of France and America, but the whole world took place at the retirement home where Jeannine now spends her days.
It all started when Robinson decided to share his story with a group of French journalists. He told them how he needed someone to wash his clothes while serving in France 75 years ago and Jeannine’s mother was more than happy to lend him a helping hand.
He recalls how he went head over heels for the beautiful lady the moment he laid eyes on her and it was more than obvious that she loved him back. Sadly, he had to leave her town and head to the Eastern Front.
‘I told her maybe I’ll come back and take you, but it did not happen like that,’ Robbins told French television channel France 2.
‘When he left in the truck, I cried, of course, I was very sad,’ added Jeannine, whose last name is now Pierson. ‘I wish, after the war, he hadn’t returned to America.’
All Jeannine hoped for was for her love to get back to her after the war was over. Unfortunately, that never happened so she decided to continue her life without him. Eventually, she got married and had five children.
Robbins returned to America and found love with his wife Lillian. The two were married for 70 years and both worked together at a hardware store in Mississippi. Lillian passed away in 2015 at the age of 92.
What Robbins had of that time in France was his affection towards Jeannine and an old black-and-white photo of her. He didn’t really think he would meet her ever again.
When he met with the French journalists, he had his photo with him. He was again in France after so much time for the 75th anniversary of D-Day. When speaking to them, he asked whether they could help him find Jeannine’s family, believing she was no longer alive.
But the journalists did their job and managed to track down Robbin’s first love. The facility home she stayed at was located only 27 miles from her hometown.
When they told him he was going to meet her again, saying, “She’s alive, and she’s waiting for you,” the veteran’s heart skipped a beat.
The moment they saw each other was magical. It felt as though not a single second passed since the last time they spoke.
‘I always loved you. You never got out of my heart,’ Robbins told Jeannine.
‘He said he loves me. I understood that much,’ Pierson told one of the journalists.
But it was when he showed her the photo of her that he kept all those years that she started shedding tears.
Jeannine got to ask him why he never came back to look for her, but life is sometimes unpredictable and things don’t always turn out as we expect.
They spoke for a couple of hours and Robbins promised this wasn’t going to be the last time he visits her.