Thomas Miller said he doesn’t think there’s a “trick” to the longevity of his 30-year relationship with husband John Baker.
“We’re just very much in love and we would do absolutely anything for the other,” he explained.
The couple will celebrate their 30th anniversary April 1. The Philadelphia natives met in 1987 at Woody’s.
Miller, who currently works at a reinsurance company, visited the bar with a friend from law school after an evening class. At the time, Baker was working part-time as a doorman, bar back and waiter at Woody’s — after having left a Catholic order in which he served for 15 years — and would stop by to turn in his time sheets on Thursday nights.
“The first Thursday, Tom was with a group of my friends and I treated them to a round of drinks,” Baker explained. “The next Thursday, I was sitting at the bar and the bartender said, ‘That guy down the other end of the bar wants to buy you a beer.’ On the third Thursday night, I got him out of Woody’s and took him dancing at Key West. And that was that!”
“I thought he was just a really nice guy, very friendly and made me feel at ease,” Miller, 54, said about his first impressions of his future husband. Baker, 67, was struck by Miller’s smile, and said he was “tall and handsome, a real gentleman.”
Though they took to one another quickly, Baker said their personalities are quite different.
“For example, I loved dancing in the clubs but Tom wouldn’t go near the dance floor, at least not until after his fourth or fifth beer,” Baker joked.
“Personality-wise, I don’t think two people can be much more different than the two of us,” Miller added, “but we complement each other perfectly. We each have different strengths and weaknesses and so together we can accomplish pretty much whatever it is we want to do.”
They also share a love of music, theater, dining and their “large, very loving families,” Baker said.
The pair also both stated the same favorite trait about the other: generosity.
Miller and Baker wed Oct. 25, 2013, in Collingswood, N.J., where they live.
The couple applied for a marriage license the day after marriage equality came to the Garden State. The Collingswood mayor had offered to officiate weddings a few days later, which they signed up for.
Then, they headed straight to the mall — as they said neither had a decent jacket to wear to the ceremony.
They were married alongside 13 other couples, including several of their good friends, at Scottish Rite Theater. About 70 of their loved ones were at the ceremony and returned to their house afterwards for a celebration.
To celebrate their 30th anniversary, the couple is planning a relaxing weekend at an inn in Cape May, along with a trip to Paris later this year.
It has been important to mark this and other anniversaries, Baker noted.
“Each milestone is so meaningful because the love has grown each year.”