Married couple of more than 50 years dies of COVID-19 complications just days apart

Married couple of more than 50 years dies of COVID-19 complications just days apart
Married Germantown couple dies of COVID-19 days apart | Charles and Margaret Powe (Source: WMC)

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - He was an adventurer who delivered babies into the world. She was a light and an inspiration to everyone. Her favorite holiday was Easter, the day she called her son from her hospital bed to say goodbye, fully aware she was succumbing to COVID-19.

"The last time we saw them was March 13,” said Lisa Powe, talking about her in-laws, 88-year-old Charles “Ed” Powe and 80-year-old Margaret “Peg” Powe.

No visitors were allowed in the Powe’s assisted living facility starting in mid-March because of the threat of coronavirus.

The Powe’s were residents at The Village at Germantown retirement community. In early April, both had to be taken to the hospital because they were ill, diagnosed with COVID-19. Ed and Peg were in negative pressure rooms right next to each other at Baptist Memorial Hospital. Their family was unable to visit.

“So that was pretty hard because we were used to seeing them. I mean, somebody in our family saw them every day. So that was pretty hard," said Lisa.

Lisa says the nurses at Baptist helped Ed and Peg communicate through Facetime and shared photos.

“When he saw the picture of her and realized he just had the biggest smile on his face. And they sent that to us and it’s just super cute," she said.

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Ed, an obstetrician, and Peg, a stewardess, had been married 58 years. Lisa is married to their son, Charles.

“The thing that really stood out about them was their love for each other, their love for their family and their love for the Lord, their faith,” said Lisa.

Granddaughter Margaret says Peg had mastered social media, and her grandfather was full of wisdom.

“I could always go to her for anything," said Margaret. “She was always there. She was always on Instagram commenting on my pictures, knowing my friends and wanting to be involved in my life. And my grandfather, he was a go-to person for advice and had a really dry sense of humor and always could make me laugh.”

Peg passed on April 14. Ed went just four days later. The faith the couple held so strongly is what’s guiding their loved ones through this difficult time.

“It’s been a tough time,” said Lisa. “But I really knew the Lord was walking with us when it worked out they could have rooms next to each other, when they got to be together. I just said I now that he’s with us.”

“They were both just really amazing people,” Margaret said of her grandparent while smiling. “I’m really thankful to have them in my life.”

The Village at Germantown is dealing with an outbreak of COVID-19. Four residents have now died. A spokesperson for the facility says seven residents and five workers have tested positive for COVID-19. More than 40 people have been tested, 21 tested negative and they’re awaiting the rest of the results.

But Lisa says she doesn't fault the facility, saying she thinks they took every precaution. Ed and Peg were vulnerable to the virus because he had Parkinson’s and Peg was dealing with rheumatoid arthritis and other serious medical issues.

Her husband Charles was able to look through a window at the hospital to see them before they died.

The Powe’s leave behind two children, five grandchildren and a lasting legacy of love. Their family plans to hold a celebration of life this summer when everyone can gather together to remember them.

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