Pat Boone, iconic singer of the 1950s, lost his wife of 65 years on Friday.
Shirley Boone was 84 years old when she passed away last week. According to a report by PEOPLE, she died in the home she shared with Boone in Beverly Hills, California. Her husband was by her side, as were their four daughters — Cherry, Lindy, Debby and Laury. The publication adds that she had peaceful send-off, with her family singing hymns by her bed.
Shirley suffered complications from vasculitis, which she had contracted just a year before. While her family is mourning her loss, Boone told reporters that he expects to meet up with her again someday.
“We lived a wonderful, blessed life together for 65 years. I’ve parted with my better half for a little while… but we don’t die, we just move on to another place, and today was moving day,” the singer said. “She’s changed her address is all and moved to a different mansion that I expect to join her in one day.”
“I’m very confident of that,” he went on. “That took the sting out of what happened today because we know we’re gonna be together again and have a whole new beginning.”
Boone met Shirley in high school, and the two have been together ever since. They were both 16 years old when they began seeing each other.
"We were very much in love," he confessed.
Shirley's family came from music royalty as well. Her father was legendary country singer, Red Foley. When the family decided to move away, 19-year-old Boone asked Foley for permission to marry his daughter.
“He tearfully asked me one thing, ‘Will you take care of my girl?’ and I said I would,” Pat recalled. “And the tears rolled into his coffee because he knew he was moving and planned to take her with him, but he was willing to leave her with me.”
In addition to their own daughters, Boone and Shirley shared an incredible 16 grandchildren and ten great-grandchildren. The couple settled in Teaneck, New Jersey for a few years in their early lives. Shirley gave birth to four girls in five years while Pat worked his way through Columbia University, trying at the same time to maintain a music career. Boone said that his wife was a dedicated mother and homemaker, and they took time for a few "second or third honeymoons" over the years.
“The thing that would most fulfill her was to be a good wife, and mother, and grandmother and to create happy homes,” he said.0comments
Boone, a contemporary of Elvis Presley, is known for songs like "Love Letters in The Sand" and "Moody River." He is 84 years old as well. He told reporters he will remember his wife most for her capacity to love others.
“She had an honest, deep, earnest love for people and her desire to help people as activist,” he said. “She was so easy to love because she loved so easily and so naturally.”