When one party of a marrige is dead the status should update to Widowed.
Great suggestion, but it is a little more complicated than that. A "marital status" is stored for each couple. Your suggestion works fine for married couples, but when a couple marry and then separate or divorce, you would want the status to stay as separated or divorced rather than change to widowed when one of them dies. So being a little more specific - the marital status should only auto-change if the current status was "Married" when one party to the marriage is flagged as deceased.