A couple who family members said had one of the longest marriages on record died just three hours apart, two weeks shy of their 81st wedding anniversary.
Roy Lingafelter, 102, and his 98-year-old wife, Lizzie, died Friday at the Mercer County Nursing Home in this western Illinois community, 25 miles south of the Quad Cities."They lived a very good life together. They enjoyed life," granddaughter Barb Kelly said. "And this way, neither one had to know the other was gone. The good Lord wanted it that way."
The Lingafelters had been confined to their rooms for about a week while suffering from pneumonia, a nurse at the home said.
The couple would have been married 81 years on April 11. Lingafelter drove a horse and buggy 12 miles from his farm in Keithsburg to Aledo in 1910, to marry his 17-year-old bride.
Kelly said it was among the longest marriages on record.
The Guinness Book of World Records lists two marriages that lasted 86 years. One marriage in England began in 1762 and ended in 1848. A New Hampshire couple's marriage lasted from 1743 to 1829.
"You have to give and take and agree with each other," Mrs. Lingafelter said of her marriage during an interview last year. "And of course, we loved each other."