Bill and Mary Stone have been married for 21 years, but when they met, neither had nuptials on the mind. Bill was in his “late bachelor days” and spotted a beautiful woman “with a world-class figure decorating the pool” at a private condominium complex. Mary had been single “a lot of years” and was content to stay that way.
Yet, once he introduced himself and they got to know one another, she found him appealing and intelligent, despite their obvious differences: He was from the north (Chicago); she was from the south (Tennessee). She was socially moderate (“I’m an independent,” Mary said); he was a staunch Republican. “I call him Mr. R,” she said. She was a neat freak; he was not. At all.
But they share commonalities in the values that mattered most and soon married and found themselves walking hand in hand, in tandem. Still.
How do you make it work?
“Friendship,” said Mary. “Respect.” Added Bill: “She’s very interesting. I love to hear her stories – still. And after all these years, you have no idea how good it is for morale … to have a great looking wife waiting for you at home.”, Both agree it’s important not to undersell the value of physical attraction and never insulting your partner by letting yourself “go.”
Are you proof that opposites attract?
“We’re a study in contrast,” said Bill. “She’s Armani; I’m Value City. She’s sea bass; I’m bratwurst. She’s art galleries; I’m the bleachers of Wrigley Field. She’s fine, French wine; I’m beer. She’s ballet; I’m baseball.” But there is an important shared attribute neither overlooks, Mary said. “We’re opposites in some ways, but in the core values, we’re the same.”
They also share an obvious affection and delight in teasing one another. “Every Sunday she asks, “˜Are you going to sit on your duff?’ and every Sunday I tell her, “˜Your question hasn’t changed in 21 years and neither has my answer.’”, They both smile mischievously at this, their weekly joke.
Do you have any nicknames for each other?
“She’s known as “˜Madame Elegance.’ I gave that (moniker) to her more than 25 years ago,” Bill said. So what does Mary call her husband? “”˜Bill’ in various tones,” she deadpanned.
How do you divide up the household chores?
“I’m fundamentally useless,” Bill divulged, “but I can make coffee. You’d be surprised, but she can’t.” Mary shrugged her shoulders and nodded her head in agreement. She can’t and doesn’t, but she does take care of everything else. “She’s very, very neat. She’s actually made the bed with me in it four times in our 21 years of marriage,” Bill gibed, chuckling. “It’s a good thing I eat faster because if I didn’t, she’d clean up my dishes before I finished.”
Where do you like to go when you’re out “˜n’ about?
The Stones enjoy eating out at Porcini, Avalon, Volare and J. Harrod’s. They’re also fond of attending black-tie charity events, including the Bourbon Ball and Derby Gala. But when it comes to the best “bang for your buck,” a Louisville Bats game at Slugger Field is “hands down the best entertainment in the city,” said Bill, who has been able to convince his wife only on occasion to join him at the ballpark.
April 6, 1990.
Bill and Mary have a blended family of six children and 10 grandchildren.
Cherokee Gardens area.
Bill is president of Louisville Plate Glass Company, a founder of United Glass; Mary is a community philanthropist who serves on numerous nonprofit boards, including the Kentucky Center Endowment Fund and Women 4 Women.
Cats or Cards
“I’m a former University of Louisville trustee and a current U of L overseer. This is a red family,” Bill said. “We do have one son who graduated from the University of Kentucky,” Mary added. “But he overcame it,” Bill quipped.
The Stones enjoy attending athletic events at U of L, but they also are frequent audience members at various concerts, performances and lectures hosted by the university’s McConnell Center.
Category: In Tandem
About the Author (Author Profile)
Angie Fenton is Managing Editor of The Voice-Tribune, a Blue Equity company. She is also an entertainment correspondent for WHAS11′s new morning show, “Great Day Live!”, which debuted August 22 on Louisville’s ABC affiliate. Additionally, Angie is an entertainment correspondent for the Saturday Morning Show with Ron ‘n’ Mel Fisher on 84WHAS (840 AM) and has served in the same capacity for Churchill Downs, the Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks; Breeders’ Cup; and Circuit of the Americas during the Formula 1 U.S. Grand Prix in November 2012. Angie also serves as an emcee, host, voiceover professional and on-camera commercial talent.
Angie has a bachelor’s and master’s in English from Central Michigan University and began her career as an adjunct professor at her alma mater. She is the youngest of five — four of whom were adopted, including Angie, and none of whom are biologically related. She is also a Michigan native who moved to Kentucky in June 2002. Angie is owned by two dogs — Herbie and Yoda — and feels lucky to have loved and been loved by many more, including Pooch, Jessie, Onyx, Jack and Big Bud, who took his last breath on Christmas Day 2012.