They immediately hit it off, dating for three years before deciding to elope.Lying to their parents, the two said they were taking a day trip to Kentucky to visit Kenneth's old basketball coach.Heading to the courthouse with only in their pockets, Kenneth and Helen arrived with barely enough to pay the fee. 20, 1944, two days before Kenneth was legally old enough to get married. When the couple returned, they were too nervous to tell their parents right away, so they lived separately several weeks until Kenneth developed the courage to break the news of their elopement."I would have liked to have been there for that conversation," Cody said.
Kenneth took this particularly hard."He would just reach out and grab her hand, but he would keep his head down because he couldn't stand to see her hurting," Cody said.Upon his wife's death, Kenneth was ready to join her, family said.Years ago, when the two took an overnight ferry equipped with bunk-beds, they chose to both sleep on the bottom bunk rather than be separated for even a night.Soon after Kenneth, Helen's health also started to go downhill, and she was confined to a hospital bed near the end of her life.
"We wanted them to go together, and they did."After Kenneth had his leg amputated 2½ years ago because of circulation problems, Helen became his main caretaker, making sure he got everything he needed.She continued this up until three weeks before their deaths, when she became too frail to care for him."She was so weak, she could hardly do it," Cody said.