This is a story about when life gives you lemons, make lemonade, or in 95-year-old Louie Romano’s case, lemon doughnuts.
For the last three years, six days a week, without fail, Romano has driven to Sweet Nana’s Bake Shop in Anmoore, where he orders the same thing: a lemon donut and a cup of coffee. But, that’s not what makes this World War II veteran unique.
“I just like lemon. They’re sour, like a woman,” said Romano.
And just as sour and sweet as the pastry, is Romano’s life’s story, which he never hesitates to share for any ear in the bakery that’s willing to listen.
“He’s here for probably over an hour, and we sit there and listen to whatever story he has to tell because they are so unique. You don’t have that anymore,” said Sweet Nana’s Bake Shop Manager Dennis Mazza.
Romano, a World War II veteran, recalls the moment he knew he would serve his country.
“It all started one morning. I heard a knock at the door, and a fella asked me did I go outside yet? That was the day the United States declared war on Germany,” said Romano.
From there, Romano spent almost two years as a medic overseas.
“November the 30th, I arrived in Liverpool. I spent 4 weeks on the ocean, said Romano. I enjoyed it myself. I had never been outside of Mt. Clare.”
And, by the time you get to your second cup of coffee, Romano will tell you the secret to a long, healthy marriage. He and his wife Lina were together 46 years before her passing in 1997.
“We never had an argument. She loved me, and I loved her, and that’s the way it was,” Romano said.
Even though Louie Romano experienced war and loss, he managed to create a beautiful life for himself. And, as for Sweet Nana’s, Romano doesn’t really go there to tell stories, or even for breakfast. His reason for his daily visit is actually what he believes keeps him 95, going on 96-years young.
“You have to keep on moving. I notice now if I sat, it hurts me to get up. I gotta keep on the move. You got to live life. That’s the main thing,” said Romano.