The DeLaigles had a truly enduring love.

By Melissa Locker
December 03, 2019
Kelvin Murray/Getty Images

Herbert and Marilyn Frances DeLaigle spent the last 71 years of their lives together, raising their six children, 16 grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren together in their home in Waynesboro, Georgia. So, in some way, it only made sense that they would leave the world together, too.

The couple met when Marilyn was just 16 years old and Herbert a mere 22 when they first met in a cafe in Waynesboro. He invited her out and they went to the movies, according to Georgia news outlet WRDW. A year later, he asked her to marry him.

While Marilyn said yes, they almost weren’t married. Turns out, Herbert was always late, including to his own wedding. The preacher was so frustrated by the hour-long delay that he almost didn't marry them. He relented but then rushed through the service, according to WRDW.

They didn't have much, but they knew that as long as they faced life together, hand-in-hand, they would make it. And they did. After they were married, Herbert was shipped off to Germany where he served in the Army during World War II, and Frances joined him, according to her obituary. After they returned to the States, Frances held down the family fort, rearing their six children, while Herbert served in Korea, and Vietnam. She even found time to be a Cub Scout den mother.

Over the course of their lives together, they lived in many states, but always came back to the South. After serving in the army for 22 years, Herbert retired in 1970 and enrolled at Augusta Tech, North Georgia Tech, and attended University of Georgia for one year, his obituary notes. While he was in school, Marilyn started her own business, Marilyn’s Nursery near Waynesboro. Herbert worked alongside her at the nursery, living their lives side by side.

After spending seven decades together, Herbert died at 2:20 a.m. on one July morning this year, exactly 12 hours later, his wife Frances joined him, passing away at 2:20 p.m. that afternoon. They were buried at the Botsford Baptist Church Cemetery in Waynesboro.

The DeLaigle family released a statement saying, "It's amazing how they were together for 71 years and now they are together in Heaven. What an amazing love story that is."

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According to WRDW, their secret to a long happy marriage was a simple one. “Show your love," Herbert said. "And be there for each other," Frances said. They always were there for each other, right up to the very end.

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