Renate Stumpf has been working for Walmart for 25 years, but this special Valentine’s Day surprise from an unlikely person has got to be her most memorable moment on the job so far. Her ex-husband, Louis Demetriades, had a plan to surprise Renate Stumpf with a special message and made arrangements with the staff at Walmart to pull it all off.
Louis met Renate in Germany in 1959 on an Army base when they were just 18 years old and Louis was a soldier. He fell in love with Renate, who worked in the kitchen on the base. They eventually were married, moved to the United States, and started a family. The couple had three children and while they struggled financially and Renate had a language barrier because she could barely speak English at the time, they eventually began to fight all the time.
They were married for 12 years when they filed for divorce. They went their separate ways, moved to different states, and both remarried. Both of their spouses passed away and the two reconnected again on Facebook, before they started talking on the phone and rekindling their romance. It had been 43 years since they had last spoken!
Louis came to surprise Renate at her job at Walmart… she turned around to discover her ex-husband standing there, holding a sign, after he traveled 286 miles to say something very important in person. He asked her: “will you marry me?”
Renate was floored by the unexpected surprise, holding her hands to her face, and reacting in utter disbelief that Louis had come all that way to ask her that.
Her response? “Well…,” adding, “I just talked to you this morning.” Maybe it wasn’t quite the immediate reaction Louis was hoping for in response to his question, but she had to wrap her head around what was happening first. Then she gave him a hug and a kiss, while he asked “Well?”
She answered, “no” and they started laughing before she said, “Yes, but not today.” Fair enough.
In an interview with News 5, she said, “43 years is a long time and to say yes right away… I’m going to have to test him a little bit first. I will marry him though because he’s a good man.”
Louis said, “Why did I come to Walmart to propose to my wife again? It’s because she has so many friends here and I knew that she would like to share that with them.”
Renate added, “Best valentine I ever had in my life.” So sweet.
Many people weighed in on the proposal on social media, with some finding it romantic and calling their relationship “true love.” Others, however, weren’t so sure, with one person noting: “I don’t know. I’m kinda thinking differently. If it didn’t work the first time, why will it now. They better check into it also because a lot of elderly lose some medicare and social security benefits when they marry!”
Another thought that perhaps “maturity changes things” and another person added: “It happened to me. Love my husband even more this second time around.”