During World War II, Jean and George Spears met and fell in love in a London dancing hall. Their lovely love tale spanned decades after decades. The WWII lovebirds died hours apart just one month after their 75th wedding anniversary. And, still suffering from the unexpected death of both parents, their children claim the couple’s deaths defy «any kind of logic.»
A Soldier’s Wife and Her Officer
1941 was the year. Jean lived and worked in London and went to a dance hall with friends. There she met George, a sergeant major with the Royal Canadian Engineers’ 1st Corps Field Survey Co. who would eventually become an intelligence officer.
George was instantly smitten when he saw Jean in her red outfit.
«That was the end of my story. I never let her leave my sight «he remarked.
Jean wasn’t a fan of George’s shoes, but she decided to give him a chance on the dance floor.
«She looked down at my army boots and said, ‘I’m not sure if we can with those clodhoppers you’re wearing,» George remarked on the couple’s 72nd wedding anniversary. «That was our first meeting. ‘Let’s give it a shot,’ I said. And so we did. That was the end of it.»
ut the two quickly fell in love as they danced the night away.
“He had his army boots on but he could dance. And his rhythm was perfect. So we didn’t dance with anyone else the whole evening.” Jean recalled.
The pair married a year later, in 1942. With the war raging, there was no time for a huge project. Jean was dressed in a gown borrowed from the butcher’s daughter.
«When you met a boy, you made the most of every opportunity since you never knew when or if you’d see him again. There was stimulation to it, a lovely, fantastic exhilaration that is difficult to describe and difficult to comprehend if you weren’t there. Your senses were strengthened as a result of your anxiety «Jean stated.
The couple returned to George’s home in Canada in 1944. They spent many decades there as a loving husband and wife.
WWII Lovebirds Died Hours Apart
A month after celebrating their 75th anniversary, 94-year-old Jean came down with pneumonia and was admitted to the hospital on a Tuesday. She and 97-year-old George chatted on the phone on Wednesday. And then on Thursday, George fell into a deep sleep and wound up in the hospital as well.
Staff attempted to reunite the pair on the same floor. But the WWII lovebirds died hours apart before they could. Jean went asleep peacefully and died the next day at 4:30 a.m. George followed his darling bride’s lead a few hours later, at 9:45 a.m.
«But this defies any sort of logic. We were overwhelmed by the suddenness of it,» says their daughter, Heather Spear.
The grieving children find comfort in telling stories about Jean and George, and their incredible love story. They say the two always complemented each other so well. Jean was the more outgoing, and loved parties and chatting.
«We laugh a little about it because she was the stronger of the two about what she wanted to do or not do,» says Heather. «She was a force to be reckoned with.»
George was quieter and loved the outdoors.
Jean, who had moved from London to Canada to be with her husband, continued to support those back home during the war, organizing a food and care box drive for households in London’s East End. She also worked to establish a club for war wives, and her services were recognized and honored by the Queen of England in 2006!
Five years later, the pair attended a private reception in Ottawa with Prince William and Kate, Duchess of Cambridge. At the event, George proudly displayed a 1942 image of Jean that he had hidden under his soldier’s beret.
«Kate asked if I had always kept the photo and I replied, ‘All through the war and ever since,’» George explained.
The incredible love shared by Jean and George is the fondest memory, by far. Jean herself described the blessing of such an amazing marriage.
«I realized when we met that we were on to a good thing,” she explained. “When we got married, we thought we were in heaven. Throughout our lives, the ups and downs, we know that together we are a good thing. We recognize it and have never failed to acknowledge it.»
We can just picture these two lovebirds dancing in Heaven!