True love and devotion exist, and one man from Waikiki, Hawaii, embodied it perfectly. After his beloved wife passed away, he never stopped visiting her grave, bringing flowers as payback for all she did for him during their 72-year marriage.
Ninety-three-year-old Ted Richardson met the love of his life when he was only 16. He still remembers going home and telling his dad that he had seen the girl he wanted to marry.
While he had the foresight for their future wedding, Ted couldn’t have imagined the great romance and decades-long commitment ahead of them. Theirs is a love story for the ages.
The Devoted Lovebirds
Ted served his country as a marine in World War II, and while he was away from home, he kept a photo of a girl named Florence close by. He looked at it often, confessing, “She was beautiful. I didn’t mind looking at her all the time.”
When the veteran’s service ended, he didn’t waste any time before marrying the girl of his dreams—so a lifetime of love and laughter started. Ted worked as a teacher, and the FBI employed his wife.
Together they had a son, Ted Jr., and life was perfect. The couple enjoyed 72 years of marital bliss in which Florence remained tender-hearted, only losing her temper with Ted once.
Thanks to Ted’s recordkeeping, he knew exactly how many times he had visited his wife’s grave from her passing until 2018—the number is unbelievable.Advertisement
The Veteran’s Heartwarming Routine
Ted was in awe of his wife’s dedication to their union and family, cherishing her every chance he could until her passing in 2013. When she died, he lost his best friend and quickly developed a routine that allowed him to continue honoring her.
Six days a week, no matter the weather, Ted visited his wife’s burial site at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific. He took three buses from his Waikiki residence and was usually the first person there at 6:30 a.m., eagerly waiting to get in.
He Brought Her Flowers as Payback
The widower spent most of his time tending to the area around Florence’s grave, cutting the grass and placing fresh flowers in front of the plaque that read, “Wife of CPL Ted Richardson USMC. Beloved American Mother.”
He often opted to bring colorful carnations for his wife because they started as tiny buds, opening slowly over two or three days. The security staff at the cemetery knew Ted well, driving him up the hill to his wife’s gravesite every day.
For Ted, the act of service was something he called payback time. He considered it his way of returning his doting wife’s love and service towards him for all the years they were married.
The Special Arrangement with His Church
Thanks to Ted’s recordkeeping, he knew exactly how many times he had visited his wife’s grave from her passing until 2018—the number is unbelievable. He had taken 1,300 trips to her gravesite!
The widower even made plans for the future when he was no longer around, asking his church to bring flowers to Florence’s grave once a month. But while he was still able, he had no plans of stopping his daily visits, sharing:
“I’ll keep going as long as I can go. God will tell me when I’ve had enough.”
The Online Response
The online community admired Ted’s devotion to his late wife. Many people shared their desires to have a beautiful love like theirs, while others applauded the sweet and caring veteran:
“I’m a younger lad, but this man’s energy and this whole story are so admirable. Thanks for sharing!!!”
– (Joshua Dauzat) December 28, 2019
“My grandpa did the same for my grandmother. Their generation is what America needs now! Love and respect.”
– (Cindy Moriel Ybarra) December 21, 2018
“Does this kind of love ever exist anymore? I just want to find somebody who loves me the way that this man loves his late wife.”
– (Briana Groneman) December 20, 2018
“May we all have such dedicated love in our lives! Bless you, Ted Richardson!”
– (Stevye Proffitt) December 19, 2018
Ted is a one-of-a-kind man. His actions displayed the kind of love everyone longs for and deserves—unconditional and unending. We take our hats off and commend his honorable way of cherishing the woman who meant the most to him.
Click here for another story about an acclaimed actor who speaks to his late wife daily. The “Taken” star lost his beloved partner but never forgot about her, using her legacy to help raise their two precious boys.