I'm sorry for your loss, but your story is simultaneously very heartwarming. The depth of love to carry friendships so long, so far and so well is beautiful. I'm not old enough yet to brag of a friendship that lasted that long. My oldest friendship is currently 31 years and it's a beautiful thing.
I have no helpful advice for you at this time, but thank you for sharing your story. It's nice to hear of people who have such huge hearts, such deep wells of love to share from!
"Love As Thou Wilt"