Tags: harvey | Irma | namesakes

Harvey and Irma, Married 75 Years, Marvel at Stormy Namesakes

Harvey and Irma, Married 75 Years, Marvel at Stormy Namesakes

Harvey and Irma Schlulter (Screengrab of Twitter post@erinruberry)

By    |   Friday, 08 September 2017 07:39 AM

Harvey and Irma, the hurricanes, have stormed around in the news, but Harvey and Irma Schlulter, who have been married for 75 years, have been living quietly in Washington state with no intent of doing any harm.

Fate – and the World Meteorological Organization's storm naming system – brought the couple and storms together, The New York Times reported.

"I don’t know how they’ve done that, to have a Harvey and Irma," Irma Schluter, 93, told the Times Wednesday about the naming of the two high-intensity hurricanes after her and her husband Harvey, 104. "I don't know how that worked out."

The National Hurricane Center started the organized storm naming list in 1953, which has now been taken over by the World Meteorological Organization, per its website. The original name lists featured only women's names until men's names were introduced in 1979.

Six lists are used in the rotation, meaning that the 2017 list will come back up again in 2023, unless the storm's name become so identifiable with the time because of damage, cost, or sensitivity, they are retired, like Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

Category 4 Hurricane Harvey dumped record amounts of rainfall on Texas last month, flooding Houston, the nation's fourth largest city, and shut down major gasoline refinery hubs like Port Arthur, Texas.

Now, Category 5 Irma is threatening Florida with winds estimated at 185 miles per hour. Millions have been told to evacuate the state before it reaches landfall.

Harvey and Irma Schluter, though, have stayed away from such hurricanes living in the Pacific Northwest.

The Times said they first saw each other in the 1940s in a chance meeting while Harvey Schluter was visiting his brother in one duplex apartment in Spokane, Washington, and Irma living with her sister in the other.

"I wasn't quite through (high) school yet," Irma Schluter told the Times. "I wanted to wait until I was done. But he talked me into getting married before that."

They were married in 1942 and lived briefly in Fort Meade, Maryland when Harvey Schluter served in the U.S. Army, but Washington was always home for the couple.

The couple celebrated their 75th wedding anniversary with a gathering in March, the Spokane Spokesman-Review said.

"It's pretty amazing, huh?" Dona Schluter, the couple's adopted daughter told the Spokesman-Review then. "They're the most loving, wonderful, giving people I know."

The couple had two children and provided foster car for more than 120 who were physically or developmentally disabled.

Harvey and Irma have outlived many hurricanes, and they will likely outlive the ones currently named after them, as well.

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Harvey and Irma, the hurricanes, have stormed around in the news, but Harvey and Irma Schlulter, who have been married for 75 years, have been living quietly in Washington state with no intent of doing any harm.
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2017-39-08
Friday, 08 September 2017 07:39 AM
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