Has there ever been a love story quite like this?
When Rocky Abalsamo’s beloved wife Julia “Julita” Echverria Abalsamo passed away in 1993 due to complications from heart surgery, the dedicated husband worried his wife would be lonely.
So he decided to sit by her grave to keep her company, braving all sorts of bad weather in West Roxbury, MA in order to always be with her.
On Jan. 26, Abalsamo passed away at the age of 97, reuniting him and his soulmate. But his story still lives on due to his incredible devotion for his wife, even in her death.
Abalsamo chatting with visitors
Abalsamo’s story first attracted attention in 2000, seven years after his wife of 55-years had died.
He described his daily routine of walking to St. Joseph Cemetery in the morning, opening up a lawn chair next to Julita’s grave and spending the day alongside her, without a break for food or water.
When the cemetery would close for the evening, Abalsamo would sprinkle crumbs on his wife’s plot so that animals would keep her company during the night.
“She is part of me, so here I am whole,” he explained to the Boston Globe in 2000. “Being here makes me feel better. Not good, but better. I do it for Julita, and for myself.”
Once the news spread of Abalsamo’s unique ritual, strangers came to the cemetery to give him blankets, clothes and to help decorate Julita’s grave. He would then tell them stories of the way things used to be and would offer love advice if a lonely passer-by needed some.
Abalsamo’s daily visits ended in 2005 after the death of a family member encouraged him to spend more time with his living relatives. But he still made time to see his wife regularly and sit with her.
Now that Abalsamo has passed, he requested to be buried on the left side of her plot because that was “his side” when they would go walking together.
Now, after 20 years apart, they can once again walk side by side.