Valentine for man’s wife goes global

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – An Albuquerque man wants to make sure his wife feels loved this Valentine’s Day, so he recruited a few helpers from all over the world.

Now he’s not the only man – or woman – proclaiming his love for his wife.

Every year, South Valley resident Lonnie Anderson goes to great lengths to do something creative for his wife.

This year’s idea started off small. He’d ask a few friends from around the globe to hold up “I Love Anne” signs.

Photos: I love Anne ‘World Valentine’

“There’s just so much going on that there doesn’t seem to be a lot of hope in the world,” said Anderson. “And I thought I’d just reach out to a couple friends that I knew, that I work with around the world, and just see what they thought.”

Soon, the Valentine’s Day project took on a life of its own with word spreading through emails and Facebook posts.

With two weeks to go, Anderson has already collected photos from more than 40 countries – all paying tribute to his wife of 13 years.

Photos of people holding “I love Anne” signs in a variety of languages have been taken everywhere from Sydney to Saudi Arabia.

Some of Lonnie’s favorites include one taken in Iran and a pair of pictures taken in Israel and Palestine.

Anne Bolger-Witherspoon says the Valentine is proof it’s not about how much money is spent.

“I think if you just take a second and say, what can I do that tells somebody how much I appreciate them or love them without having to really break the bank,” she said.

One year, Anderson posted signs around Albuquerque that she’d see on her route to work. Another year, he put a carousel in their front yard.

Bolger-Witherspoon says this year’s project is one of her favorites because it’s bigger than the two of them.

“I think it’s about remembering we’re part of a community … and that love is universal,” she said. “It’s really sweet to think it started because he had an idea and he loves me.”

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