Their daughter describes it as a "Romeo and Juliet" type of tragedy, but this one has a pandemic twist: Leslie "LD" McWaters, 76, and Patricia McWaters, 78, of Jackson, who spent 47 years together, died within a minute of each other on the same day of COVID-19.
Daughter Joanna Sisk told WDIV it's the way her mom, a nurse, would have wanted it -- to go together. "I can tell you this, when they passed we think Mom -- the boss -- she definitely went to his room and said, ‘Come on. Let’s go.'"
But the double loss devastated the family, Sisk said, adding, "People were talking about it (coronavirus) not knowing my parents in the hospital fighting for their lives and I just had tears streaming down my cheeks listening to them,” Sisk said. “Our entire family is completely devastated.”
The family spelled out the couple's love in an obituary that talked about their life, their sense of fun and their enduring love.
"Pat was a no nonsense person and dad was a fun loving person. She was definitely the boss. They were polar opposites, yet made it work for almost 50 years," the family wrote.
Pat McWaters worked at Foote Allegiance Hospital for 35 years as a Registered Nurse in the OR. Her husband was a truck driver who retired with Hendrickson Trucking. He was veteran of the United States Navy Reserves and was a member of the Lions Club. He loved making his famous strawberry booze for the chili cook-off and shared it with everyone. "LD had more friends than anyone could count and he loved them all dearly," his family wrote of their now-absent father and grandfather.
"He was the king of one liners. LD had two you would always hear him say, “It’s colder than a well diggers ass!” made us laugh every time," they wrote.
They kept the fun and spark in their union and always loved to dancing at Julie’s Bar, where they first met. LD said, “Pat was the most beautiful woman ever and boy did she look good in hot pants and go-go boots!” family members recalled.
"They did almost everything together, so it should be no surprise that they went to be with the Lord together within the very same minute," family wrote.
Hospital staff that cared for them said it was too close to call which one went first so they recorded their deaths at the exact same time, Tuesday, November 24, 2020 at 4:23 PM.
"Those of us that know them, know that mom went first and said, “LD, it’s time to go,'" their daughter wrote in their obituary.