By the time Vince Triggs passed away at 96, he had touched “thousands of lives” through his business, neighborhood and charitable and community events.
He had four kids, four grandchildren, and seven great-grandchildren. He was married to his wife, Eileen, for 71 years.
And now, months after his passing, Vince Triggs has managed to touch two more lives in the most loving and selfless way — Eileen's and his dear friend Ron Fulton's. The pair were married earlier this week. It was something Vince had wished for Eileen just before his death.
Vince and Eileen's son Mike Triggs wrote a Facebook post on his dad’s final day, saying his dad “expressed his desire that mom not spend too much time grieving and it was his desire that at some point she might remarry and be able to share the rest of her life with someone who would care and love her as he did.”
His mom, Mike wrote, called it “crazy talk.” But there was more.
Vince Triggs said, according to his son’s post, “while there would sure to be many, the only man that he knew that would treat her as he would want her to be treated was his best friend, Ron Fulton."
The two men met in 2015 and became fast friends. Fulton’s wife, Melba, was a friend of Eileen’s until she passed away in 2019.
After Vince’s death, Eileen and Ron spent time together. He helped her clean out Vince’s closet. They shared meals and watched football games. They went to concerts.
"One day Ron had asked if I would consider going to Arizona for a couple of months and I said no because I would not consider going with someone I was not married to," Eileen Triggs told TODAY Parents. “The next day he came back and said, ‘would you consider going to Arizona if we got married?’ and I said yes.”
They wed on December 26.
The couple's former spouses and friends were very much on everyone’s minds the day of the wedding, Mike Triggs told TODAY.
“Both are convinced that their spouses would approve and give their blessing because neither would want the other to be alone and would want them to be happy,” he said.
Mike Triggs said in many ways, it’s like a “Cinderella story.” While his mom and Fulton were cleaning out Vince's closet, they came across a pair of custom-made boots. Fulton was going to try them on but Eileen told him they would never fit. His dad’s boots, Mike said, were a perfect fit. The same thing happened with a ring Eileen had planned to sell. It belonged to her deceased husband, but Ron tried it on — and it fit just right.
Fulton, Triggs said, will never take his dad’s place. But, he wrote in his Facebook post, “Obviously, this came as a shock to all of us. The timing seemed to be a bit soon but after thinking about it Mom is 90 and Ron is 87. Neither is getting any younger and it just makes sense that they are able to be happy, go places and do things as a couple while they are both in good health.
“And after all that is what Dad wanted. He didn’t have a stipulation that she wait two and half years, he just wanted his wife of 71 years to be loved and be happy.”