A New Jersey couple that was married for 67 years died last week. They passed just a day apart, with each unaware of the other’s condition.
Olympia DeNittis, 95, of Woodbridge, passed away last Sunday at JFK Medical Center’s Haven Hospice in Edison, the Asbury Park Press reports.
Michael DeNittis, 94, lost his 4-year battle with stage-IV colon cancer the next day, just a few miles away in New Brunswick. His family made the decision not to tell him of Olympia's passing, the New Jersey Star-Ledger reports.
“It was bizarre,” granddaughter, AnnMarie McDonald, told the Ledger. “I think instinctually he knew she had died.”
Michael and Olympia were childhood sweethearts, and grew up a block apart from each other in Port Reading. They were married after World War II and had two daughters.
McDonald said that she believes her grandmother wanted to be the one to go first.
“She sensed my grandfather was on borrowed time, and she wanted to make sure she died before him,” McDonald told the Press. “He didn’t want to die. He loved his life and wanted to keep living it. She wanted to show him the way.”
McDonald says the family is devastated without the couple.
“They were both remarkable people,” she said. “We relied on their guidance and insight until the end. And now they’re together.”
(Photos courtesy of AnnMarie McDonald via The Huffington Post)