Couple married for 70 years hold hands before they both died of Covid-19

Couple married for 70 years hold hands before they both died of Covid-19
Couple married for 70 years hold hands before they both died of Covid-19

Tributes have been paid to a couple married for 70 years who died within days of each other after contracting coronavirus.

Margaret and Derek Firth, both 91, died in Trafford General Hospital last week – but had been able to see each other in the hospital before they passed away.

The pair, who lived in Partington, were sweethearts since the age of 14.

Margaret was originally admitted to Wythenshawe Hospital but later transferred to Trafford. When Derek was then admitted to Wythenshawe at a later time, he was moved to Trafford to be with his wife after doctors feared she didn’t have long to live.

Their daughter Barbara Smith said that when Derek joined Margaret, she asked him ‘where’ve you been?’

“From then she seemed to get better, it seemed to give her a boost,” Barbara told the M.E.N.

“It was quite a sad moment, but it was really lovely that they were both there together.”

Derek died first on January 31, and Margaret passed away three days later.

Both were admitted after suffering with other health issues, but later caught Covid.

Explaining the process of how her dad was transferred to be with his wife, Barbara said: “I got a call to say we’re not happy with her, we think that she may go, would somebody like to visit.

“And of course, my dad jumped at the chance to go and see her in hospital.

“I think that is probably where he has contracted it, but to be honest he probably wouldn’t have had it any other way.

“There’s no way he wasn’t going to not go and see her.”

Barbara, 50, paid tribute to the ‘amazing’ NHS staff, who also allowed visits from other family before they passed.

Margaret and Derek married in May 1950, and lived in Partington for most of their lives.

Margaret trained as a machinist and later worked as a cleaner at Broadoak School in Trafford, while Derek was initially a butcher and finished his working life as a storeman.

They had five children, later going on to have 11 grandchildren and four great grandchildren.

Barbara said both her parents enjoyed socialising and going on holidays.

She said her mum was an ‘avid’ bingo player, while her dad enjoyed playing dominoes in pubs.

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