An elderly couple in the US who married over 60 years ago have both succumbed to Covid-19, dying less than an hour apart.
85-year-old Bill Olwig and 83-year-old Patricia Olwig both started coughing on the same day in late April and then tested positive for Covid-19 at a Missouri hospital.
St. Louis-area couple married nearly 61 years die on same day from COVID-19 https://t.co/mlrFT4ejOU
— St. Louis Post-Dispatch (@stltoday) May 8, 2020
Suffering from numerous medical problems already, the pair were put on ventilators in the hope they might somehow survive, with their children realising how dire the situation was.
“We knew then, it would probably be the end,” the couple’s daughter, Rose, said.
A Catholic priest who knew the family well performed the Last Rites on April 28 at the hospital, as the couple’s seven children, twenty grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren watched the sacrament being given on Zoom.
The couple’s life support was switched off on May 1, with Bill dying first and then his wife Patricia passing forty minutes later.
“It’s devastating,” their son Pat told the Post-Dispatch. “And I know they’re just this one small part of this thing that’s hitting people all over the world.”
Bill Olwig and Patricia Abeln fell for each other on a double date in the 1950s and, when he touched her knee under the table, Ms. Abeln knew he was the one.
“Mom always said that’s all it took,” Rose explained. “Right then she knew he was the right one.”
They married in 1959 and went on to have six boys and one girl, with Bill calling his wife “babe” right up until the end.