A couple that had been married for over five decades died last month while holding hands in their hospital room, just a year shy of their 60th anniversary.
Don and Margaret Livengood had something most couples dream of having. Don, 84, and Margaret, 80, spent most of their lives together; through thick and thin, their love had prevailed. Which is why the workers at the Carolinas Healthcare North East had mixed emotions when they learned of their passing. They were both incredibly saddened by their deaths and inspired by the life they had lived.
Nurses at the caring facility even positioned their beds so that the couple could face each other while holding hands days prior to their deaths. Unfortunately Margaret passed on August 19; Don passed several hours later after telling his children and grandchildren that he’s looking forward to meeting her in heaven.
Their story was so inspirational that days before the couple’s death, doctors pulled some strings and arranged for them to be put in the same room, just so they can spend their last few days together. They haven’t been apart for 60 years, it was only fitting that they spend their last moments on this world in the company of one another. “When we get to heaven, we can walk in together, just like we’re getting married again. Another honeymoon,” Don said, according to his daughter Pattie.
Don struggled for air during his last few days, but managed to hold out, because he did not want to abandon his beloved wife. He was the first one to be admitted to the hospital, but he was soon joined by Margaret, who was admitted on August 8. Their daughter was the one that drove them there. According to family members, the couples held on just so that their grandchildren, who were stationed in Italy at the time, could make the trip and visit them one last time.
The managed to arrive 12 hours before the death of Margaret. “It was normal for them to be holding hands, their love was so precious. But it was the sweetest, most precious thing you can imagine to see them holding hands in the hospital,” their daughter said of the picture of the two holding hands.
Their death touched everyone at the hospital, including the doctors and the nurses that took care of them, who were moved to tears when they heard of the news. “This is one of those cases I don’t think any of us is ever going to forget. Seeing these two people who had spent their lives together, together in the same room as they took their last breaths, none of us are ever going to forget this,” Dr Randy Schlister said.