“We knew when one went, the other was going to go,” said daughter Linda Cody. “We wanted them to go together, and they did.”
The Felumlee’s story began when the two were just 18 and 19 years old. The couple met and immediately hit it off, dating for three years before eloping.
Helen and Kenneth reportedly lied to their parents and said they were taking a day trip to Kentucky to visit Kenneth’s old baseball coach.
Instead, they went to the courthouse with $5 in their pocket and wed on February 20, 1944.
Helen quickly became pregnant with the first of their eight children.
The couple was known for serving their community and remained very active in the lives of their children and grandchildren. They even visited nearby nursing homes on Sundays to provide company to those that lived there.
With retirement in sight, their children grew older and their home grew empty. The Felumlees began exploring their love of travel, the Zanesville Times Recorder said.
The loving couple visited nearly all 50 states by bus.
“He didn’t want to fly anywhere because you couldn’t see anything as you were going,” said son Jim Felumlee.
The couple was absolutely inseparable, literally never spending a single day apart the entire duration of their relationship.
Their children told the newspaper that they remained deeply in love from day one, even holding hands while eating breakfast together until their final days.
Kenneth had his legs amputated about two and a half years ago due to circulation problems with old age, and Helen became his main caretaker until she was too weak to continue.
And as Kenneth’s health declined, Helen’s did, too. She was eventually confined to a hospital bed toward the end of her life.
“[Kenneth] would just reach out and grab her hand, but he would keep his head down because he couldn’t stand to see her hurting,” daughter Linda Cody said.
Helen passed away Saturday at the age of 92.
Their family said Kenneth was ready to join her, and he did less than 16 hours later, surrounded by 24 of his closest family members and friends Sunday morning.
“It was a wonderful going away party,” Linda Cody said. “He was ready. He just didn’t want to leave her here by herself.”
*Zanesville Times Recorder contributed to this report.