FORT WORTH, Texas (KTVT/CNN) - Together in life and together in death, a pair of high school sweethearts from Texas who had been married for 53 years died from coronavirus side-by-side, holding hands.
Son Tim Tarpley says his parents, Curtis and Betty Tarpley, were both diagnosed with COVID-19 at the same time in June. His mother was admitted to Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital in Fort Worth shortly before his father, and she declined faster.
“My mom called me and said, ‘Hey, I want to let you know I’m ready to go.’ And I yelled and screamed,” Tim Tarpley said.
He then called his dad, who was on a different floor of the hospital.
“He said, ‘How’s your mom?’ I said, ‘Well, she’s not good. She may not make it past tomorrow.’ It was like at that moment, knowing that my mom was then gonna go, it was OK for him to go,” Tim Tarpley said.
Tim Tarpley says nurses he’d never met, especially one he only knows as Blake, made his parents’ last moments special by making sure the two were in the same room.
“He [Blake] really went out of his way to get my mom moved from her room to his room, and then, he just placed their hands near each other. Next thing we know, they grabbed each other’s hand, and that’s how they went,” Tim Tarpley said.
It was a gesture by “unsung heroes” whom Tim Tarpley says he can never thank enough.