In Titanic, the scene showing an elderly couple embracing while the ship sunk was based on a real couple.
They were the owners of Macy's. Their names are Isidor and Ida Straus and their story is quite touching. Raised in the south during the Civil War, Isidor would go on to New York where he would jointly found a store that sold crockery and glassware with his brother.
After becoming extremely wealthy, Isidor married Rosalie Ida Blun, and by all accounts the two were inseparable. When apart they would write letters every single day and tried to always stay in each other’s company. The Straus’ boarded the Titanic on their return trip from Germany to the United States when, on April 14, 1912, the ship struck an iceberg.
The couple made it to a lifeboat, but Ida refused to board proclaiming, "I will not be separated from my husband. As we have lived, so will we die, together." When an officer offered for Isidor to join his wife he refused, instead giving his spot to his wife’s maid.
The couple then proceeded to the back of the panicking crowd and were last seen sitting together in chairs on the deck of ship, calmly holding hands until a massive wave washed them into the sea. Today a memorial for Ida and Isidor can be seen on the main floor of Macy’s Department Store in Manhattan.