Seven couples living in Valrico's Featherock Community renewed their wedding vows in a joint ceremony last month.

A group of Valrico residents made a very special commitment last month. In honor of Valentine’s Day, seven couples from the Featherock manufactured home community renewed their wedding vows in the community’s club house.

According to RJ Bruce, Associate with Reputation Partners Communications, the seven couples had been married a combined 343 years when they renewed their vows.

“The couples reaffirmed their commitment to one another, honored the years of marriage they already shared and raised a glass to their futures together,” said Bruce.

he couples who participated were Robert and Margaret Hoinkis, who have been married for 58 years; Robert and Carol Zavacki, who celebrated their 50th anniversary the day of the renewal; Elvis and Mary Lou Wilson, who have been married for 73 years; Samuel and Myrian Hernandez, who have celebrated 21 years of marriage; Bernie and Amy Robart, who married 40 years ago; Horst and Gudrun Odparlik, who have been married for 63 years and Diane and Issac Yates, who are celebrating 38 years of marriage.

After the ceremony, the couples and guests enjoyed a Valentine’s Day-themed reception with drinks, dinner and dessert.

Married for 73 years, Elvis and Mary Lou have advice for couples who have not been together for as long.

“I think the success of our marriage is, he lets me be me and I let him be him,” said Mary Lou. “I knew when I was 10 years old that he was the man I was going to marry.”

Robert and Carol, who celebrated their 50th anniversary with the renewal also shared their secrets to marriage success.

“People ask us, ‘How do you stay together that long?’” said Carol. “He’s my best friend.”

“She’s right here and it’s the same thing the other way,” said Robert. “That’s the way it’s been for 50 years.”

Featherock is a 55 and older community with more than 900 residents. Amenities include a clubhouse with billiards and a game room, a library, shuffleboard and tennis courts and a swimming pool.

The community is located at 2200 S.R. 60 E. in Valrico. For information, visit or call 855-678-5694.

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Kate Quesada
Assignment Editor Kate Quesada started working at the Osprey Observer in 2004 after graduating from the University of South Florida with a masters degree in Mass Communications. Since then, she has held various positions at the paper and has been working as the assignment editor since January 2020. She lives in Lithia with her husband Mike and sons Dylan and Max and stays active in the community on school PTA boards and volunteering with local organizations.