LIVING

Elderly Couple Die Holding Hands, Just 5 Hours Apart

02/26/2015 05:18 EST | Updated 02/26/2015 05:59 EST

It's like reading a page from The Notebook.

California couple Floyd and Violet Hartwig, married for 67 years, died with their hands clasped together.

Though the pair couldn't speak during their last hours together, family members say they managed to keep communicating to each other by holding hands and breathing in unison. In the video above, News Breakers explains that the couple, who met in elementary school, started dating in the '40s while Floyd was on leave from the Navy, and remained deeply in love through the years.

The Fresno Bee, a local newsite, reported that the couple suffered illness for many years. Violet, who had multiple strokes and was rapidly losing weight, suffered from dementia, while Floyd suffered kidney failure just two weeks before he died and was previously diagnosed with colon and bladder cancer. Despite their health, the couple were active up until the end, even having dinner together days before they passed away.

The idea of loving someone so much that not even death can separate you is a romantic notion, but it's also made scientists wonder if it's possible for someone to die of a broken heart. Researchers say there's evidence to support the theory. The CBC quoted Dr. Sunil Shah saying that people are at an increased risk of poor health in the first few weeks of losing a loved one. A number of factors play into this theory, including emotional stress and not taking medication.

Watch the video above to see the 131 love letters Floyd wrote to his beloved while they were separated during WWII.

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