Catholic couple married for 73 years die 28 hours apart

A Catholic couple in Ohio in the United States who were married for 73 years have died within 28 hours of each other.

When Helen Auer, 94, died last week, she was sitting in a chair, and her husband Joe came into the room and knew what had happened.

The Cincinnati Enquirer reported that Joe leaned over, gave her a kiss goodbye and whispered in her ear: “Helen, call me home.”

Just 28 hours later, Helen did just that, when Joe Auer died at the age of 100.

His children said their father could manage one night without her, but not two.

On Wednesday, a funeral Mass was celebrated for Joe and Helen in front of the same altar, at St Lawrence’s Church in Cincinnati, where they were married in 1941.

The couple met at church and had the first of their 10 children before Joe went off to fight in World War II, when Helen was pregnant with their second child.

Helen was later able to mail him a photo of herself and their first two children, which Joe kept in his wallet for the rest of his life.

He had the photo with him when he landed on Utah Beach in Normandy on D-Day in 1944.

“Dad thought of his children as a gift from God, that was a responsibility for him,” his daughter Mary Jo Reiners said.

“He taught us to be servants to God and to be caretakers of his Earth. He was recycling on his last day.”

Joe and Helen’s marriage survived because they loved each other and because they worked at their marriage and they shared a devout faith, the article stated.

Money was a little tight and 10 children can add stress to any relationship, but they always managed.

Joe used to take two buses each way to his job as an engraver. He bought his first car when he retired.

“They were simple, humble people. They wanted nothing and got everything in return,” their son Jerry said.

“If somebody were thinking of getting married, they could do a lot worse than to look at my parents.”


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