43 years after they first met at McDonalds, man again serves sweetie a side of love [VIDEO]
Just as he did 43 years ago, Rydberg served his "13" an order she'll never forget.
Steve Rydberg fell in love with young Kristine Hess while he worked at a McDonald's in Crystal in the late 1960s.
Then 16 years old, Rydberg and his co-workers developed a special code whenever a cute girl would come in and place an order. They'd say things like, '13 on register 2,' or 'I need some fries and a 13 on 3.' 13 was the tip off. And to Rydberg, no 13 ever surpassed Kristine Hess, who quickly became a regular at Steve's register.
"I thought she was the most beautiful woman in the world," Rydberg told KARE 11. Then the couple graduated from high school, and their young love seemingly died on the vine.
Rydberg moved out of state and raised a family, but his marriage ended in divorce. Hess raised a daughter of her own. In 1990, with sweet memories of his McDonald's 13 dancing through his head, Rydberg gave Hess a call. The two ended up married six years later.
Steve and Kristine were high school sweethearts. They drifted apart after graduation, only to rekindle a romance two decades later.
"It was like I never left her... meant to be," Rydberg said.
It was recently Hess' birthday, and KARE 11 helped Rydberg put together one of the sweetest, most heart-melting birthday surprises you'll ever see. KARE told Hess that she was randomly chosen to participate in a story about fast food, and she drove to meet with a reporter at the same McDonald's where she met her high school sweetheart and future husband.
As she ordered a Filet-O-Fish and fries, the manger called out, "13 on 2!" And suddenly it was 1969 all over again. There was Rydberg, dressed in a McDonald's uniform, holding a tray with his sweetheart's order. He served her, told her he loves her, and gave her a kiss as her eyes welled with tears.
Now 60 and 59 years old, Rydberg and Hess may have a few more wrinkles than they when they first met as teenagers. But their story suggests that true love, in some cases, really can conquer all -- time, broken marriages, and even too-salty french fries.
Here's the adorable video of Hess' birthday surprise, courtesy of KARE 11:
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