Maurice and Cora Conner donated $50 for 50 years of marriage to Goodfellows, The World Herald’s charity.

The Conners have given annually for at least 10 years, and last year they marked their donation as a tribute to a half-century of commitment.

“We’ll be giving again to Goodfellows this year,” Cora said. “But I guess it will have to be for something else!”

They met at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln as both pursued master’s degrees in German in the 1960s.

Cora grew up in Freeman, South Dakota, a community so close to its German roots that English was Cora’s second language. Maurice came from Houston and was inspired to pursue German by his mother’s interest in the culture.

The two graduated and moved to Green Bay, Wisconsin, before settling in Omaha in 1971 with teaching positions at the University of Nebraska at Omaha and Creighton University.

“We never intended to stay,” Cora said. “We’re almost natives now, although we still don’t really like the winters.”

Over the course of 50 years, they have spoken lots of German, traveled and never had a major conflict.

“It’s the day-to-day stuff,” Cora said. “Just being there and being able to talk to each other. We really do seem to be soul mates.”

Cora and Maurice celebrated 50 years by traveling to see the Taj Mahal in Agra, India.

“It was on my bucket list,” Cora said. “And it was wonderful, although I’m not sure we’ll be doing it again.”

The couple wasn’t in India on their wedding anniversary, but they were there for the anniversary of their engagement.

“It was Feb. 14,” Cora said. “Valentine’s Day. So that was nice that it worked out that way.”

The Conners have a “soft spot” for the overlooked in the community — they donate to Goodfellows to support Omaha’s disadvantaged, and they also give to the Omaha Public Library and other organizations.

“We like to give to charity,” Cora said. “And we know the Omaha World-Herald is really using that money to help the community.”

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