Is there any better love story than the story of Noah and Allie from The Notebook? Their love was so strong that died in each other’s arms, unable to comprehend life without the other? Well, sometimes reality is better than fiction as this one story about Kenneth and Helen Felumlee will certainly remind you that true love does exist.
The couple who met as teenagers in Ohio immediately fell in love and married after just two years of dating. The two met each other after Kenneth’s ex-girlfriend introduced the two to each other. All the way back in February of 1944, the legal age for marriage was 21 in Ohio, but this couple were so enamored with each other that they couldn’t wait two more days until Kenneth’s 21st birthday to marry. Kenneth did a small little white lie to marry his true love.
In fact the pair had told their parents that they were taking a day trip to Kentucky, but instead went out to get married, without their parents’ permission. The pair kept it a secret from their parents for several weeks until Kenneth decided to finally admit it to their parents. Not long after Helen became pregnant with their first of 8 children.
The two were inseparable during their 70 years together. The couple had 8 children, 23 grandchildren and 43 great grandchildren! That’s one huge family reunion right there!
Over the entire 70 year marriage, the two never once slept apart from each other. Many years ago, the two took an overnight ferry that was equipped with bunk-beds. Rather than sleep alone for just one night, the pair shared the bottom bunk together. Even as Kenneth’s health began to decline, Helen slept on the couch at 89 years old so she was always near him.
Every single day the couple would hold hands during breakfast. A true sign of the love that never faded between them.
After Kenneth retired in 1983 after a full life of working as a railroad car inspector and mechanic and then becoming a mail carrier. The pair traveled the United States by car. Kenneth wanted to see everything for himself. A flight wouldn’t do the United States the justice he knew it deserved. Jim Felumlee, the couple’s son, explained to the Zanesville Times Recorder
He didn’t want to fly anywhere, because you couldn’t see anything as you were going
The love was so strong that even their own children knew that one wouldn’t be able to survive much longer without the other. The pain would be too strong for one to bear.
When Helen’s health began to decline, Kenneth would reach over to hold his wife’s hand. But he would always keep his head down. He couldn’t bear to see her in pain.
And as it turns out, the children were very much right.
In April of 2014 Helen passed away at the age of 92, a very full life anyone would be envious of. Mere hours later her 91-year-old husband, too, passed away. They were mere inches apart when Helen died.