I said, “Let’s get married; she said okay” Harvey and Shirley married 65 years

By Larry Gauer

Harvey Hahn described his proposal to Shirley Rosane in his unique manner of speaking when He said, “Let’s get married.” In a way which foretold the couple’s compatibility, Shirley replied, “OK.” 

Mrs. Hahn explained further,” I didn’t have any clothes to get married in so I borrowed some and off we went to Rapid City to get married.” The couple was married in the Cathedral on July 14, 1952. Thus began 65 years of wedded bliss for Harvey and Shirley (Rosane) Hahn.

Although both of the Hahns were born in Martin, Shirley’s parents moved to a farm near Cody, Neb. early in her life. While living there she met Harvey at a dance in Merriman. The courtship began very slowly and as Shirley explained, “I had another boyfriend when she met Harvey. He was not too happy (about my seeing Harvey). He tried to find me and even went to Vetal where he thought I was living with my brothers who lived there.”

Mrs. Hahn continued, “Last fall while Harvey and I were at the Dairy Queen, we came upon the ex-boyfriend and his wife. After exchanging introductions, the man turned to Harvey and exclaimed, “You did get her.”

When asked how he met Shirley, Harvey replied with a huge grin on his face, “Golly, let me see...then allowed Shirley to give the details. Harvey’s courtship began in earnest when he was invited to a family dinner. The large family of Rosanes meant a lot of dishes to wash and Shirley was assigned the task. 

To her utter surprise, Harvey came to the kitchen and began to help her with the dishes which caused the attraction to begin for Mrs. Hahn. Shirley added,  “The next time we saw each other was at the county fair dance. After dancing, he asked to take me home. Since I was only sixteen, I told him that I had to ask my mother. Luckily for me she said that it was ok.” They dated for two more years before Harvey popped the unique proposal in 1952.

On their way home from Rapid City, the first of many humorous incidents occurred. The couple explained, “We were near Hot Springs and our car decided to break down.” As it turned out the problem was minor, the couple was on their way back to Martin later in the day.

Another incident involved Harvey and a few of his buddies  who, as Shirley smirked, “went on a ‘wild’ turkey hunt.” The group happened upon their ‘prey’ when the turkeys were sitting a fence. The men hopped out of the car and caught the turkeys and brought them to town. What was really bad, exclaimed Mrs. Hahn, “They were driving my station wagon! Can you imagine the mess those turkeys made in my car.” Needless to say the men were forced to take the turkeys back where they absconded them.

In between living on a farm, managing the Standard station, and working at the Coop, Harvey and Shirley raised four children, Melvin who lives in Sioux Falls, Karen, Gordon, Neb., Harvey Lee, and Carol, both of Martin. Meanwhile Shirley managed a daycare before her tenure at the Bennett County Booster where she has been working since 1974.

The Hahn’s advice to young couples was, “Stay in tune with each other. Talk to each other. Never go to bed angry at the other and keep God in your life.”

The couple has been blessed with 10 grandsons and two granddaughters, eight great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild to make the Hahn family a five generation clan.

502 Second Avenue, Martin, SD 57551 • 605-685-6866 • booster@gwtc.net