If Franz and Elisabeth Rom could be summed up in one word, it would be ‘sincere.’ The Rom’s are, as Franz put it, “simple people, who have been fortunate to have so many experiences.” Franz and Elisabeth were born in Austria, on opposite sides of the country. Elisabeth was raised in The Alps, by the borders of Germany and Switzerland, while Franz was on the southeast side, closer to Italy’s border. Elisabeth’s fondest memories were all contained in her childhood and growing up. She loved working on her father’s farm and for his grocery store, but most of all loved the freedom she had as a child and lamented that children today don’t have that same liberating security.
For Franz, it was harder to pinpoint a favorite memory or time, just an overall enjoyment of spending time with his family and good friends. They travel back to Austria as frequently as they can to enjoy the beauty of their homeland. For the majority of his career, Franz worked in the hospitality industry in Austria and the surrounding countries but he also spent time working in New Zealand for a year, and various parts of Asia for five years before eventually moving to the Princess cruise line in Los Angeles. In fact, it was his working here that helped him meet one of Elisabeth’s brothers who encouraged him to join them in their venture to open a restaurant, which is how he met his future wife. Elisabeth also helped her brothers out and eventually worked on the Princess cruise line as well. They’ve known each other for forty years, and have enjoyed a strong marriage for thirty of those years. When asked what the greatest part of their marriage was, Elisabeth chuckled. “Having someone there,” she said, “someone who cares. Doing stuff together, growing old together. It’s great to have some support and be loved.” Franz added, “We make a really good team with responsibilities. Everything from chores to family. That makes it so much easier.”
Franz and Elisabeth have two children, a boy and a girl, Nico (32) and Heidi (30). When Nico was born, Elisabeth stopped working because she wanted to be home to raise her children, which Franz added, “it was worth every second because they both turned out fantastic. It was great that she was committed to being a full-time mom.” When I asked if they had any grandchildren yet, they said their kids are taking their time. Franz joked he should send them to Utah to show them how it works.
Franz retired in 2014 after his wife joked she would divorce him if he wasn’t retired by age 60. They live in Mesquite for the many beautiful golf courses but they also enjoy the drive up to Southern Utah to hike the various National Parks and just enjoy the beautiful landscape. Of course, they love to travel as well, having been fortunate enough to see so many wonderful places in the world. Franz said they may in the future end up moving back to Austria to enjoy their homeland once more. They are easygoing and fun-loving.