A couple married for 82 years said that there’s no big secret on how to stay together for a long time, but there are basic behaviors that other couples can emulate to increase their chances.
D.W. Williams, 103, and Willie Williams, 100, celebrated their wedding anniversary and both of their birthdays in a party with family and friends in Charlotte, N.C., on March 31.
The couple reminisced about living through wars, the Depression, and the civil rights era. As for how they’ve stuck together for so long, they said it requires work and being kind.
“I don’t have no secret for that; just be nice to each other,” D.W. Williams told WSOC-TV.
— John Paul (@JPaulWSOC9) April 1, 2019
Granddaughter B.J. Williams-Greene threw the couple the party at a local church and made sure to include singing and lots of stories.
“It’s communication and loving each other and working together. They are each other’s best friend,” she said of her grandparents’ relationship.
“To see them at this age and still doing well, it’s just a blessing to have them here,” Williams-Greene added.
Together in life and now in death. The Melvindale couple was married for 56 years. They took their last breath holding hands. It’s a beautiful love story that will remind you of the movie #Notebook Tonight @FOX2News 10&11 pic.twitter.com/ZYZlORYrwD
— Taryn Asher Fox 2 (@TarynAsherFox2) March 12, 2019
Michigan Couple Die Holding Hands
Will and Judy Webb got married in 1963 and spent 56 years together until several months ago when they died—holding hands.
The couple died within hours of each other on March 2 at a Detroit hospice.
Fox 2 Detroit reported on the touching story, likening it to the movie “Notebook,” about two lovers who died holding hands after being reunited at the end of their lives.
Will and Judy Webb met when they were teenagers and became friends.
“At 14 they met and were friends, they dated other people, they were engaged to other people,” said Marybeth Webb, a daughter, according to Fox 2 Detroit. “And then they were both single when he went to Army. So she was like, ‘I didn’t have anyone to write, so I started writing your dad.’”
Will Webb went overseas to serve in the Korean War, and as the two wrote letters to one another, their affection blossomed.
They tied the knot on Feb. 16, 1963. The couple went on to have three daughters.
“The love and mutual respect,” said daughter Lori Thomas about the secret to their long-lasting marriage, according to the report. “They always had their arms on each other. If she was away five minutes, he would say ‘Where’s mama, have you seen mama?’”
Things took a turn several months ago when Judy suffered complications from routine surgery.
“It went bad,” Thomas said.
— FOX 2 Detroit (@FOX2News) March 12, 2019
Seeing his wife’s state deteriorate, Will’s health quickly declined.
“My father watched it and broke,” Thomas told the news outlet.
Both underwent treatment, but eventually ended up in hospice.
“I put him in hospice and let God take it from there, and my mom just started declining so bad we said we have to get them back together, we can’t do this, they can’t die without one another,” said Ann Warren, a daughter. “We said ‘Mom, you want to see dad?’ She said ‘Yes.’ (She was) all excited and they brought mom through the door in dad’s room and he looked over and saw her and said ‘Mama!’ And that was like the last thing he said.”
The couple’s daughters pushed the beds of their parents together on March 2 at hospice so they could be close to each other.
“They were holding hands and when my dad took his last breath, my mom went like this rubbing his hand,” said Thomas. “She wasn’t responding but she knew he died, so she rubbed his hand like I’ll be there soon—and she was.”
A few hours later, Judy died. “We all have this long line of love we just treasure,” Warren told Fox 2. “That’s why no one should ever settle. If you have someone you truly love you should fight for it. They fought for their love every day.”
Epoch Times reporter Tom Ozimek contributed to this report.