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Fifty-seven years later, pen pals are still fast friends

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Pen pals: Debby Kopach, left, and Andrea Robinson celebrate 57 years of friendship (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

What started as a primary school assignment turned into an unbreakable friendship lasting more than five decades – and counting.

Bermudian Andrea Robinson, 68, and Canadian Debby Kopach, 67, randomly picked each other’s names and addresses to write a letter to in 1966, because their respective teachers had asked them to do so to practise their writing skills.

Neither of them remembers who wrote first but they have been best friends ever since, often writing each to other several times a year.

Ms Robinson, from Devonshire, said: “As soon as I got a letter from Debby, I would write her back and I guess she was the same way.

“Even when we didn’t write letters per se, we sent each other Christmas and birthday cards.”

They mostly kept in touch through letters until around 15 years ago, when they switched to e-mailing and calling each other.

However, they still occasionally write letters to one another.

One reason why they believe they stayed so close is because of how similar they are.

Pen pals: Debby Kopach (left) and Andrea Robinson celebrate 57 years of friendship (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

Ms Kopach, from Waterford, Ontario, said: “We both like red, strawberries, being organised and we both like to bake.

“Both our birthdays are in January, mine is on the 18 and hers the 30, which is the same date my sister was born.”

Ms Robinson added: “We are just the same type of person, it is like having a long-distance sister.”

The two have visited each other in Canada and Bermuda many times through the years and Ms Robinson is the godmother to Ms Kopach’s oldest son.

Ms Kopach arrived on the island at the weekend and reunited with her friend.

Long-time pen pals Debby Kopach (left) and Andrea Robinson (File photograph)

More than anything about her, Ms Robinson admires Ms Kopach’s easygoing personality.

She said: “We have never had an argument, what is there to argue about?

“I am so excited to have her here and have been since she told me she was coming down.”

Ms Kopach, in turn, likes Ms Robinson’s faith in God.

She said: “My mother was very ill and dying and I knew because of Andrea’s faith, I could just message her and ask her for a good prayer to use at that moment.”

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Published May 02, 2023 at 7:37 am (Updated May 02, 2023 at 7:36 am)

Fifty-seven years later, pen pals are still fast friends

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