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April 17, 2020 1:08 pm
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Jewish WW2 Vet and Coronavirus-Stricken Wife Pass Away Within Hours of Each Other

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Muriel and David Cohen in a family photograph.

A US Jewish veteran of World War II who marked his 102nd birthday last year passed away last week together with the woman he married 78 years ago.

David and Muriel Cohen — who wed in the summer of 1942 — died within hours of each other at a Jewish nursing home in Longmeadow, Massachusetts, on April 10.

The Boston Globe reported that Muriel, 97, had recently tested positive for COVID-19. David, 102, had been sick, but his test for the disease came back negative. In an effort to reduce the spread of the coronavirus at the nursing home, residents who were infected were transferred to a separate unit.

The Cohens insisted on staying together, a request that was granted.

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“The only time they’d ever been separated was when my father served in World War II, and when my sister and I were born,” their daughter, Fran Gosnick, said. “Otherwise they were always together.”

David Cohen served as a radio operator in the US Army and was among the troops who liberated the Ohrdruf concentration camp in Germany in 1945. Photos that Cohen took during the liberation are on display at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, DC.

After serving in the military, Cohen became a history teacher in South Jamaica, New York.

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