‘It’s our lockdown love story’: Horsham childhood sweethearts reunite after 36 years apart before first lockdown

Two childhood sweethearts who reunited after 36 years apart have shared their ‘lockdown love story’.

Wednesday, 24th March 2021, 9:50 am

Linda Carmel and Kurt Ellmer went on their first date aged 14 and 15 while at school together.

Kurt, now 53, said he remembers every moment of their first date, but their romance was stopped in its tracks when Linda’s foster family said she could no longer see him.

He said: “I saw Linda and I really liked her. It was love at first sight. I asked her out – she said yes. She was the only thing worth going to school for.

Kurt Ellmer and Linda Carmel

“The date was so much of an impact on my life. I didn’t know that Linda had been told by her foster family she couldn’t see me any more.”

But more than three decades later Kurt saw a picture of Linda, 52, on a school reunion group and sent her a message.

He said: “She was always in the back of my mind all the time. I always used to search her name up.

“One day I just went on there [the group] and there was a photograph of her.

“I was like ‘oh my god I can’t believe it’.”

Linda, a former nurse who is not currently working due to her mental health, said she didn’t know what to expect when she saw Kurt again in 2019 after more than 30 years apart.

She added: “I was expecting the blue eyes. Obviously the hair colour changes. It was quite an eye opener. We have just had our first anniversary of living together. It’s just amazing.”

The couple moved in together in September 2019, just a few months before the country was ordered to stay home by Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

Kurt said: It was just like coming home. Here’s someone that cares for me and wants to be with me.”

When restrictions ease, the couple hope to convert a lifeboat into a floating home and sail to New Zealand.

Linda said: “We’re like teenagers. We’re making up for lost time.”