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‘Be mine’ can last a lifetime

Couples meet and fall in love — sometimes when they least expect it. Meet three from metro Atlanta, as sweethearts the world over celebrate a day for love.

Childhood sweethearts: Adam and Janet Guy, Atlanta

Adam Guy eagerly gave Janet Caracciolo a hand-carved, cherry red heart on the last day of summer camp in 1986.

He was 11. She was 15.

Guy picked Caracciolo’s name out of a hat at the start of camp in a secret-Santa-style game. They went on hikes, tie-dyed T-shirts and sang camp songs together. Guy could hardly wait to deliver to Caracciolo (now Janet Guy) the heart with her name on it.

“I had a crush. As much as an 11-year-old can have,” Adam Guy said.

“It was so sweet and so nice,” Janet Guy recalled. “But I also thought, ‘Uh-oh,’ I have to be careful, he has a crush on me.”

After all, Janet Guy wouldn’t be just a camper the next summer, she’d be a junior counselor at the summer camp in the mountains of western North Carolina.

Adam Guy never stopped lavishing Janet with sweetness. He once promised her he’d be the first one to give her a hug after she returned from an Outward Bound-like experience with older campers.

“Eew, you stink,” Guy told Janet after she lived in the elements and without a shower for several days.

But he stayed true to his word and gave her that hug. She took his heart-shaped gift home with her.

Fast-forward many years.

They went to college, started careers. He lived in Atlanta. She lived in New York.

And then one day, Adam sent Janet an email out of the blue.

This is going to sound like the most bizarre question . . . but did you attend Eagle’s Nest Camp in North Carolina about 15 years ago? Sincerely, Adam Guy

Her jaw dropped. Yes, I did. And if you’re who I think you are, you were the lead in “The King and I” one summer... so my bizarre question is, am I right?

Before long, they were talking to each other on the phone — for hours at a time and falling in love.

Guy was no longer the kid that the camp counselors (including Janet) called, “Little Adam Guy.” He was 28. She was 32.

Janet moved to Atlanta. Six years ago, they got married.

And the red heart?

Everywhere Janet went over the years, she took the heart with her and kept it on her night stand.

It hangs in the hallway of their Cabbagetown loft.

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Anniversary day: Bob and Dolly Mitchell, Alpharetta

Bob Mitchell’s 21st birthday party started out as a simple, family affair.

But then, a pretty blonde with hazel eyes walked into his house.

Her name was Dolly Myers. She was there with her parents.

Mitchell couldn’t keep his eyes off Myers, who was just shy of 17. They quickly realized they both loved the outdoors — and roller skating.

They started dating — often spending time together roller skating or at the Myers family farm. On Valentine’s Day 1942, they walked down the aisle.

Extraordinarily compatible, they are happiest when together. Mitchell kisses his bride any time he leaves the house — and on his return.

Nowadays the couple, who are 93 and 88, walk around their Alpharetta neighborhood every day, hand in hand.

They believe one of the keys to their happy marriage is to let things go and laugh whenever and as much as possible.

Today on this Valentine’s Day, the couple celebrate their 70th wedding anniversary.

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Backyard neighbors: Karen and Ricardo Caro, Cobb County

For a couple of years, Karen and Ricardo Caro lived just a few houses away from each other, but had never met.

That’s not to say they didn’t notice each other.

“I could see a corner of Karen’s deck from a corner of mine,” said Ricardo, with a smile. “It was interesting.”

And every time Ricardo jogged by Karen’s house, her dog, Jeter, barked at him.

And then, one day, Karen was walking her dog. Ricardo was out for a run. They were more than a mile away from their Marietta neighborhood.

“Aren’t you my neighbor?” he asked. “The person I always see?” Karen knew who he was.

“Here was this person I often saw from afar and I thought, yes, he is very cute,” she said.

Ricardo stopped his run and accompanied Karen back to her house. He invited her over to his house for a date — a cookout in his backyard. The second date was at her house for a cookout.

They got married in 2007.

They decided Karen would move into Ricardo’s house. They hired a moving company. The movers walked furniture from one house to the other.