Couple married over 70 years die hours apart


a group of people sitting on a bed
©Provided by Independent Digital News & Media Limited

A couple from Georgia who were married for more than seven decades have passed away within hours of one another.

Marilyn Frances DeLaigle and Herbert DeLaigle first met in the 1940s, when Frances was 16 and Herbert was 22.

A year after meeting at a cafe in Waynesboro in Georgia, USA, the couple were engaged.

“Frances worked at a little cafe we had in Waynesboro named White Way Cafe,” Herbert told local news outlet WRDW-TV in 2018 in celebration of their 70th wedding anniversary.

“I kept seeing her going in and out, in and out and I had my eyes set on her. And then I finally got up the nerve to ask her if she would go out with me sometime.”

On Friday 12 July, 94-year-old Herbert passed away at 2.20am in the morning.

Exactly 12 hours later, 88-year-old Frances died at 2.20pm.

The couple shared six children together, 16 grandchildren, 25 great-grandchildren and three great-great-grandchildren, it states in Herbert’s obituary.

According to the interview conducted with the couple last year, their wedding almost didn’t happen due to Herbert’s lack of punctuality.

a man standing in a room: Frances and Herbert DeLaigle (WRDW-TV)
©Provided by Independent Digital News & Media Limited Frances and Herbert DeLaigle (WRDW-TV)

“He was always late,” Frances said, with Herbert explaining that the preacher almost didn’t officiate the ceremony because they were an hour late arriving at the church.

“He was always loving and patient. And good-hearted,” Frances added with regards to her husband.

Herbert served in the military for 22 years, receiving accolades including the National Defense Service Medal.

Frances spent six years living in Germany while her husband served in the army.

Years later, Frances owned and operated her eponymous Marilyn’s Nursery near Waynesboro from 1979 until 1984, working alongside her husband over the course of the five years.

In a statement released following Herbert and Frances’ deaths, the DeLaigle family stated: “It’s amazing how they were together for 71 years and now they are together in heaven. What an amazing love story that is.”

In 2017, an elderly couple also married for 71 years died four minutes apart.

Vera and Wilf Russell were being looked after in separate care homes, 93-year-old Wilf at Magna Care Home in Wigston, Leicestershire and 91-year-old Vera at Leicester Royal Infirmary.