Olin (Olé) and Donna Adams celebrated 70 years of marriage Sunday, March 15 at the Christopher Creek Bible Fellowship church, which they founded in the late 1970s.
George Olin Adams was born April 8, 1919 on a farm in Osceola, Iowa. Donna Lee Small was born Oct. 21, 1919 in Wenatchee, Wash.
The couple met at the West Hollywood Community Church when they were both 18. They married March 15, 1939.
“We should have gotten the message when the church burned down, but we didn’t listen and we got married in my parents’ living room there in West Hollywood,” Donna said.
The couple lived in California where Olé was the manager of a five and dime store on Hollywood Blvd. They had two daughters, Cheryl and Candy.
Since then, their family has grown and they now have three grandchildren and three great-grandchildren living in Arizona.
The couple eventually moved to Montebello, Calif. where Olé worked in a machine tool and die business.
In 1942, Olé was drafted into the U.S. Navy and served during World War II aboard an attack transport ship in the South Pacific until his discharge after the war ended in 1945.
Olé returned to the machine tool and die business in California, and eventually moved to Phoenix in 1956 to start up a new company.
During the early 1960s, the couple left the machine tool business and joined Campus Crusade for Christ where they served for three years. They also worked with young college-age students and young singles during this time, holding Bible studies in their home and elsewhere.
In 1967, Olé started his own machine business in Phoenix — Adams Machinery — where he worked until his retirement in 1977.
In August 1978, the couple moved “up on the mountain” — as they like to call it — to Ponderosa Springs on Colcord Road, which is approx 25 miles east of Payson on Highway 260. The couple lived there for 15 years and held Bible studies in their home for anyone who would come.
The home Bible studies grew too big for their cabin, so they began to meet in the upper level of the Christopher Creek firehouse.
In Oct 1991, Olé and Donna, with the help of many others, held the first church service in the present day Christopher Creek Bible Fellowship church building on the property next to the firehouse in Christopher Creek. Olé preached every Sunday and Donna held Bible studies for about 25 ladies in the Rim Country.
The couple moved to Payson Dec. 7, 1994 and continue to make their home here. Donna is still ministering to ladies throughout the Rim Country through her home Bible studies, even though she is legally blind due to macular degeneration.
Olé continued his preaching ministry until he retired again in 2002. He continues to be active in the church and still serves as an elder on the church board.
When asked how they are doing, Olé will always respond with one of two statements: “The Lord is good, His mercies are new every morning.” Or he will say, “I’m rapture ready, are you?”
Both he and Donna make no bones about sharing their faith.
They both still love going out to eat and spending time with other people. Their favorite time is breakfast, either at the Beeline Café or at Tiny’s where Olé says you can still get a good breakfast for a decent price.