(Reuters) - An Ohio couple who met as teenagers and were married for 70 years, almost never sleeping apart, died from natural causes within a span of 15 hours, according to their daughter.
Helen Felumlee, 92, died on April 12 at their home in Nashport, Ohio, about 55 miles east of Columbus, and her husband Kenneth Felumlee, 91, passed away the next day, according to their joint obituary.
“We knew when one went, the other was going to go,” daughter Linda Cody told the Zanesville Times Recorder. “We wanted them to go together, and they did.”
The couple met as teenagers and married in 1944, raising eight children together, according to the obituary.
Helen was a homemaker and Kenneth was a railroad worker and later a mail carrier, and both were active in the Methodist church, where they taught Sunday school.
They spent their retirement traveling to all 50 states by bus and even after 70 years of marriage, they still ate breakfast every morning holding hands, Cody said.
The couple never slept apart until about three years ago, when Kenneth had part of his leg amputated due to circulation issues, she said. Helen became his main caretaker and also started spending some nights on the couch.
“She was staying strong for Dad and he was staying strong for her,” Cody told the Zanesville Times Recorder. “That’s what kept them going.”
Kenneth Felumlee passed away with his family by his bedside after saying “Mom’s dead,” Cody said.
The couple also had 23 grandchildren and 43 great grandchildren, according to the obituary.
Reporting by Victoria Cavaliere in New York; Editing by Barbara Goldberg and Chris Reese