A childless devoted couple died only eight days apart after 72 years together. Betty Balkwill, 85, died of a broken heart shortly after husband Norman, also 85. The couple met at a Christmas party when they were just 13.
They spent their final days on different wards at Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital but were reunited when Betty was wheeled to Norman’s bedside before he died.
Close friend of the couple Derek Blatchford said: “They were a devoted couple. They got on so well. They did not have children – they just needed each other. They will be really missed but I suppose if they had to go this would have been the way they wanted it. They were devoted to each other for so many years.”
Their nephew Ray Balkwill said: “After Norman died, Betty died just eight days later. I think she just pined away without him.”
Norman and Betty (nee Craker) had met at a festive party 72 years ago and their friendship blossomed throughout their school days in Exeter, Devon.
They met in when they were 13 and got married in their twenties
The couple had a joint funeral at Exeter Crematorium.