One Equal World

A Love Story

Posted on: July 8, 2013

hearts on beach

Bill Campbell’s and John Hilton’s love spanned over 5 decades.
Image: Shutterstock

This is a love story that spans over 50 years.  It is a classic that endures the test of time, and yes, it is that of two men.  William (Bill) Campbell met John Hilton in 1957.

“I saw this fascinating looking person and was totally taken by him, and I thought this is the best thing that’s ever happened to me and, sure enough, it was,” said Bill.

Soon after, John received a draft notice and was sent to Europe for the war.  Though it was a fearful time, he received letters from Bill every few days telling him he missed him and couldn’t wait to be together.  It’s what kept him going.

A letter from Bill to John, sent on December 5, 1958 had a sweet, romantic tone in discussing their love.  However, the ending was perfect.  It ended with “M.T.E.” which stands for “more (love) than ever.” He signed all his letters that way.

“That says it all,” stated Bill upon listening to the letter once again.

While John returned from the war, he enrolled in school.  He attended for nine years and worked full-time.  During that time, Bill did all the chores to help out.  He made the bed, prepared all the meals and did all the other housekeeping.  Upon graduating, in 1971, John made a vow to never, ever let Bill do the laundry again. He stayed true to his word and now he does all the work.

Bill eventually developed Parkinson ’s disease.  At that time, John vowed to do everything he could to alleviate his suffering.  He became a caregiver and tried to ensure his comfort despite the physical hardships.  Bill’s voice went down to whisper volume after paralysis gripped his vocal chords.  Even then he declared his love.

On May 7, 2011, Bill passed away due to the ravages of his disease.  That was just seven months before New York state legalized gay marriage.  It’s a shame he didn’t live to see it.


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