Michigan couple married together for 70 years die 20 minutes apart in beds next to each other

They were introduced to each other in high school by a mutual friend and went on their first date during prom


                            Michigan couple married together for 70 years die 20 minutes apart in beds next to each other
Les and Freda Austin died within 20 minutes of each other (Legacy.com)

JACKSON, MICHIGAN: An elderly Michigan couple, who recently celebrated seven decades together, died within 20 minutes of each other in beds which were side by side.

Les and Freda Austin, both 90, were introduced to each other in high school by a mutual friend and went on their first date during prom, according to MLive. They had not left each other's side since then.

They married in 1949, and it proved to be a match made in heaven. Les, formerly a sergeant with the Michigan State Police, and Freda, a manager at a Brail Dry Cleaning in Jackson, celebrated their 70th anniversary this November.

They had two children, four grandchildren, and eight great-grandchildren, and lived together in their Jackson home until December 6, when they went into hospice together. Both of them died the next day, just 20 minutes apart.

Les died first, shortly after which Freda, despite being unconscious, sensed that her husband had died, family members said. After they died, their heads fell in the direction of each other, they said.

"They did everything together. They didn't stop with death," said Sandy Maes, their daughter. "I think they knew each other was passing and they are eternally together. And I think it was beautiful."

"If they had to go, this way was about as romantic as you could get," son Michael Austin said.

The couple reportedly loved camping and regularly took trips to UP and Tawas City. They liked visiting lighthouses and scouting garage sales for bargains as well, with Maes saying, "They went and saw pretty much every lighthouse in Michigan and some beyond Michigan. My dad has to have the biggest collection of lighthouse sweatshirts and T-shirts anywhere."

But like any couple, the outlook was not always rosy and they did have their fair share of arguments. The biggest was when Les signed up for the Korean war without telling his wife, though they eventually worked their way through that hurdle.

"I know she (Freda) was upset about that," granddaughter Leah Smith said. "Seventy years together sure isn't easy… but at the end of those 70 years together, they still cared so deeply for each other and loved each other so, so very much."

Les and Freda's funeral will be held on December 17 at the First United Methodist Church at 201 E Ash Street in Mason, according to Legacy.com.

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