A Lifetime Together: Ten years past their golden anniversary, La Jolla couple shares secrets

They've lived in the pink house on the hill with a commanding view of the Village and La Jolla Country Club for 37 years.

Milton and Elvira Blackstone intend to live out the rest of

their days in their comfy perch atop Dellcrest Lane.

Little has changed over time in their neighborhood. In fact, time's practically stood still. Of 11 homes near the Blackstones, only three have changed hands during their residence. One woman who lives nearby grew up as a kid further down the block.

"La Jolla has changed over the years," said Milton Blackstone. "For us, it hasn't changed too much."

Like their neighborhood, the Blackstones know a thing or two about familiarity. The pair just celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary. Their story is unique for its longevity as well as its celebrity, and there are a handful of couples in La Jolla who share their joy in longlasting relationships.

The Blackstones began their 60 years together when New Yorker Milton "Bill" Blackstone was stationed during World War II to Great Falls, Mont., close to Elvira who lived nearby in rural Belt. It was Elvira's cousin who coaxed her into a double date where she met Milton at a USO Christmas party.

It wasn't love at first sight, but his persistent letter-writing campaign to win her over ultimately captured her heart. When she met him at a bus depot in San Francisco and found he was carrying a marriage license, she said yes.

Little did the pair know at that time they were both fated to be involved in the birth of television in New York City during the 1950s.

Milton got a job writing for the popular radio show "Don't You Believe It," which led to other work.

"During my career in TV, I worked on all three networks: ABC, CBS and NBC," he said. "I was an agent, producer and writer. I had a hand in it all. I produced a number of different shows, the 'Steve Allen Show,' Jack Parr. I did Guy Lombardo's New Year's Eve show for five years."

Milton also began working at a talent agency and got Elvira started modeling. In addition to appearing in a number of magazines and on television shows, she became NBC's first Miss Color TV. She also appeared in a couple of televised quiz shows.

The Blackstones have two children, son Jamee and daughter Jana. They moved to California in 1968 because they thought the warmer climate would benefit Jamee, who is deaf and blind. Jamee's infirmities lead his father to begin a second career as a computer consultant working from home.

For years, Milton specialized in assisting the disabled with computers and was widely published on the subject.

"I started retrofitting computer systems for different disabilities," said Milton, "installing voice recognition and things even more sophisticated. I once helped design a computer system for a young lady who was totally unable to move anything but her eyes. By using this gauge, she wrote a book. That was remarkable."



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