Their love story is eternal. An elderly Irish couple who had been together for 76 years passed away on the same day, just hours apart. 

Máire and Gerry Ryan, from Clonmel and Newbridge, Co. Kildare, passed away within hours of each other on Monday, February 19 at the Curragh Lawn Nursing Home where they lived. 

They were born just one day apart in 1924 and began dating when they were 17. They married at 26 and spent cherished decades together, Gerry serving in the Irish Defense Forces and Máire working as an educator. They had one daughter, Geraldine. 

Determined to care for each other until the end, they moved to Curragh Lawn 13 months ago when Gerry became less mobile and realized he needed assistance caring for Máire, who had Alzheimer's. 

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In an epic love story that sounds straight out of the Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams movie The Notebook, staff at the nursing home said the couple was utterly devoted to each other, Gerry singing to Máire daily and telling her stories about their life together. 

Very sad/happy love story. R.I.P. Real life Irish Notebook couple die aged 93 within hours of each other

— Noel Ward 👁🇮🇪🇪🇺 (@wardtours) February 21, 2018

“I’ve never seen so much dedication between a couple in my life, really the whole staff are heartbroken,” Saritha Binumon, the home's Assistant Director of Nursing, told the Irish Independent. “At the same time, though, I’m happy for them, I don’t think they would be able to be happy without each other.

“Gerry was so devoted to Máire, he would read her poetry and sing songs every afternoon and re-tell her stories of their life and travels together every evening.

“Gerry was always telling all the staff how smart his wife was too, he was so proud of her. We all learned so much from their relationship and lost two great people.”

The devoted couple was laid to rest today, February 22, with a mass at St. Conleth’s Parish Church, Newbridge. Hundreds of friends and family gathered to pay tribute to them and their love.