For those who don’t believe in true love, the lives of late Pa Ajanaku Adetayo and late Madam Oyesola Adetayo of Isara-Remo, Ogun State, offer a glimpse into what real love is, for after several decades of marriage, they bade the world farewell on the same day, with just two hours apart.
After being ill for just five days, Pa Adetayo, who was 116 years old, finally gave up the ghost around 11am on Monday, June 13, 2016, and while everybody was rushing up and down the family house in Isara-Remo, in realisation that Papa had transited, somebody thought it wise to check on Mama, who had been down with stroke for over three years, only for family members to get the greatest shock of their lives — Mama was also no longer responsive to happenings around her; she had also transited.
This event sent shocking waves throughout Isara-Remo, and till today, even the children of the dead can’t explain what happened.
Speaking on how the incident unfolded, the eldest daughter, Mrs Esther Adekunle, said her father had been ill for a couple of days, “and on the day he transited, I went to see him, and he asked me to help him make a cup of tea.
“I did as he instructed, and I helped him to sit well so he could take the tea; after taking the tea, I helped him back to his bed so that he could rest, and I went to the living room to meet with my sisters who were also around that morning.
“After a while, I felt I needed to check on him, and I went to his room, but by this time, he was sleeping, facing the wall.
“I was not comfortable with this sleeping position, although I was happy he was sleeping after taking the tea, I just needed to make sure that he was fine, and I tapped him, but there was no response.
“Then I began to feel uneasy, and started tapping him harder, and when he was not responding, I raised the alarm.
“Within a twinkle of an eye, everybody was in Papa’s room, and elderly men in the community who had also arrived confirmed it to us that Papa had transited. “Although he was 116 years old, it is not easy to lose a loved one, and that was how everybody broke down in tears; we then began calling all the family members to intimate them of Papa’s transition,” Mrs Adekunle said.
How did the family discover Mama had also transited, another of the deceased’s daughters, Mrs Opeoluwa Taiwo, who had been taking care of their mother since she was down with stroke said, “while everybody was running helter-skelter after Papa had passed on, after about two hours, I just felt I needed to see Mama.
“Mama had been down with stroke for three years now, and myself and my sisters had been taking care of her; in fact, she lost her hearing and speech capabilities as a result of the sickness, so when I felt the nudge to go and see her, one of my sisters even signalled to me not to let her know her husband had passed on. “When I got to her room, I saw her asleep, and because of the way my sister shouted when she discovered Papa had died, I also felt I needed to confirm that everything was fine with Mama, and I tapped her, but there was no response; my heart skipped a bit and I tapped her harder, but when she was unresponsive, I raised the alarm.
“Everybody was shocked by what happened; we had never experienced such; for a couple to die on the same day; even who knows whether Mama and Papa died the same minute?,” Mrs Taiwo queried.
When asked if no one had told Mama about the death of her husband, which, thereafter, affected her own health, another member of the family, Mrs Kemi Ashiru, confirmed it again that Mama had been down with stroke for the past three years. Mr Adewale Odufoye is a son-in-law to the deceased; he said he was in class receiving lectures when his wife called to inform him that Papa had died.
However, while giving her opinion into what could have happened, Mrs Adekunle said the family is suspecting that their parents made a vow when they were about to get married.
“We are not really saying this is what happened, but we are just suspecting because we can’t understand how a couple would die on the same day, with just hours apart.”
Mrs Adekunle’s observation was also corroborated by Mrs Taiwo, who told Tribune that their parents loved each other so much while alive.
For Mr Odufoye, “Papa didn’t see me as a son-in-law, rather, he saw me as a son, and I am happy that I married into the family.
“There was a time he told me that despite the decades he had been with his wife, they still had their differences on several occasions, but patience, as well as the ability to respect the view of the other party contributed in no small measure to his long relationship with her,” Mr Odufoye said.
The couple had since been buried, with the celebrations fixed for early next year.