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Couple of 62 years die within hours of each other, as the family says they couldn't bear to be apart...even in death
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PUBLISHED: 16:06 EST, 7 December 2012 | UPDATED: 17:03 EST, 7 December 2012
Even death couldn't keep a couple of 62 years apart.
An 85-year-old man died of cancer on November 29 at a nursing home in Kansas and just hours later his wife and constant companion followed him in death.
Melvin Cornelson was the only man his wife Doris had ever kissed. The pair built a life together and were by each others side through thick and thin - so their family said they were not surprised that when Melvin died, his soul mate couldn't bear to live without him.
Forever love: 85-year-old Melvin Cornelson was married to his wife Doris for 62 years. Melvin died of cancer on November 29 and Doris passed away just hours later
'Til death due us part: Doris and Melvin Cornelson (pictured with their children in an undated family photo) were married 62 years ago
'They're together. They're happy,' their daughter, Candi Sawatzky, told KWCH-TV, about the loss of her parents - just hours apart from each other.
The Cornelsons had met at a young age and they never dated anyone else.
'They always stuck up for each other. Always. She said he was the first man she ever kissed and the only one she ever kissed,' Candi told the local news station.
They had celebrated their 62nd wedding anniversary this year but as their health began to decline they moved from Oklahoma to Buhler, Kansas - to be closer to their daughter Candi.
They lived together at the Sunshine Meadows Retirement Community and were beloved by their fellow residents.
'They're that couple that grew old together,' Diana Spencer, from the Sunshine Meadows Retirement Community, said.
Inseparable: Their family said the couple were constant companions. 'They're together. They're happy,' the couple's daughter said about their deaths
Affection: For Doris' birthday earlier this year, Melvin sang 'You are my Sunshine' to his longtime love
Melvin passed away on November 29, after a battle with cancer, and Doris was right by his side to say farewell.
After his death, Doris grieved the loss of her soul mate.
'She sat with us all morning and planned some things. She went to bed at noon and never got up,' her daughter said.
Her daughter said she thinks that once Melvin passed on, 'it gave Doris permission to go' and the family isn't surprised because in life, the couple was inseparable.
'I have great pictures in my head of what they're doing,' she said.
'And that's why even in death, the people Melvin and Doris left behind can do nothing other than smile. They're happy. I know they are,' she said.