They went everywhere together, sharing a love of travel for decades.

And, especially in their younger days, it seemed Lee and Ukawanna Nesbit were always going somewhere.

They were closely bonded, family members said, the type of couple who showed their eight children, 17 grandchildren and 39 great-grandchildren what a happy marriage truly looks like.

The York City husband and wife of 63 years have made their final journey, dying within days of each other last week.

Lee Nesbit was 87. His wife was 79.

Even if the timeliness of their deaths was pure coincidence, relatives said it makes sense on some level.

"I couldn't picture my mom living without my dad, my dad living without my mom," Lee Nesbit Jr., the couple's oldest son, said.

Lee Nesbit Jr., 62, said his mother "never told me, but she told my sisters that when she met my dad she fell in love automatically."

The couple married in October of 1950.

His parents were "hardworking, good people" who instilled family values in their children, Lee Nesbit Jr. said. They could be strict, but they were also supportive, he said.

She was a natural caregiver, the glue of the family, said Jonathan Nesbit, a grandson. His grandfather was a social butterfly, whose daily routine included an afternoon walk downtown, where he'd sit and talk with friends, Jonathan Nesbit said.

The couple's secret to a successful relationship was simple, a granddaughter said.

"Love. What else would keep two people together that long?" Octavia Nesbit said.

Lee Nesbit Sr.'s health had been declining for years, family members said. But he was hanging on, and Ukawanna decided to go ahead with a planned cruise.

"At 79, she was still very active," Jonathan Nesbit said.

But Ukawanna Nesbit returned from the cruise feeling ill. She was admitted to the hospital.

Meanwhile, Lee Nesbit Sr. was being treated for a possible stroke. Efforts to rehabilitate him weren't going well, and doctors decided to send him home for hospice care, Jonathan Nesbit said.

Before he left, Lee Nesbit Sr. visited his wife in the hospital for what would be the last time.

"The last thing my mother said to my dad was, 'I'll see you when I get home,'" Lee Nesbit Jr. said.

Jonathan Nesbit said his grandmother "knew that he was coming home to die."

On Saturday, Feb. 8, Ukawanna Nesbit suffered a cardiac arrest and died in the hospital.

"She got tired. I think she just was tired," Octavia Nesbit said. "She just knew that she wasn't going to have her husband that much longer."

For two days, the family debated when to tell Lee Nesbit Sr. that his wife had died.

"We felt that our dad was holding on to see his wife," Lee Nesbit Jr. said.

After a few days, the family delivered the heartbreaking news. Though he wasn't able to speak, Lee Nesbit Sr. communicated through body language that he understood what had happened.

Five days after his wife died, Lee Nesbit Sr. passed away.

The Nesbit family will say goodbye to both Lee and Ukawanna Nesbit at a joint viewing and funeral Wednesday.

The viewing is scheduled for 9 to 11 a.m. at Cornerstone Baptist Church, 100 Lafayette St. The funeral, which is open to the public, will follow at 11 a.m.

The couple will be buried at Mount Rose Cemetery.

Lee Nesbit Jr. said he's been too focused on the loss of his parents to contemplate the possible significance of their close deaths. But others are calling it a love story, he said.

"Maybe it is a love story," he said.

— Reach Erin James at