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New Jersey Couple Each Die Hours Apart, After Lifetime Together

WOODBRIDGE, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — Michael and Olympia DeNittis literally spent a lifetime together in New Jersey, and died just hours apart this week.

As CBS 2’s Jessica Schneider reported the Woodbridge, N.J., couple was laid to rest on Friday and will now be together forever.

Michael DeNittis, 94, and Olympia DeNittis, 95, met after their Italian immigrant parents arrived in America.

“They were together for 67 years in marriage; however, they were childhood sweethearts,” said their granddaughter, Ann Marie McDonald.

Michael and Olympia DeNittis grew up in the same neighborhood, and their family said they were never much more than a block apart. That was the way Olympia planned to keep it.

But then three years ago, Michael was diagnosed with cancer.

“She said, ‘What am I going to do without you?’” McDonald said. “And he said, ‘You’ll find your way.’”

But three weeks ago, it was Olympia who caught pneumonia. She passed away early Sunday morning.

It was unexpected, as Michael was the one with terminal cancer. But he did not want to die.

“I knew that she knew that he loved his life and wanted to continue living it,” McDonald said. “So I think she wanted to predecease him, to some extent, to kind of welcome him into heaven.”

Just one day later on Monday afternoon, McDonald said goodbye to her grandfather, knowing he was rejoining his wife.

“I would love to have each of them here with me today,” she said. “But since that’s not possible, this was the next best thing.”

The family took comfort in the fact that Michael and Olympia DeNittis will never know the pain of living without each other.

The couple’s funeral took place at the same church where they were married 67 years ago.

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