Brian and Shirley met at ages 11 and 12 at Salem Chapel, where Shirley was a choir member. Their first date was at the evening chapel club, and they have been together for 76 years.
In their 60 years of marriage, they have built a beautiful family, raising three wonderful children, Jenny, David, and Steve, and are the proud grandparents to their eight grandchildren. Both credit their happy marriage to closeness, making an effort, communicating, and not going to bed on an argument.
Their journey to Avon Valley Care Home began after the pair struggled to manage at home by themselves. Brian had been struggling to care for Shirley at home, and they decided she would move into Avon Valley. Shortly after, Brian joined her; having spent their whole lives together, he felt lost without her.
Being together at Avon Valley means Shirley can receive the care she needs, and Brian has peace of mind knowing she is in the best hands, meaning he can concentrate on being a loving husband. Despite residing on different floors, Brian feels comfortable knowing he can see Shirley whenever he wants while maintaining his independence.
Both led exciting lives before retirement. Brian was in the RAF and worked as a British Rail Engineer, as well as playing semi-professional football. Meanwhile, Shirley enjoyed baking and would often make birthday and wedding cakes. She also worked as a florist. Throughout their lives, they enjoyed the pleasures of travelling and taking holidays across Europe, the USA, Canada, and Australia.
Moving into a care home can be difficult, especially when faced with the prospect of leaving a loved one behind. A story like Brian and Shirley’s demonstrates how love can prosper in a care community despite differing care requirements.