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Ralph and Beryl

Ralph and his wife Beryl happily married for 46 years. They retired to Ralph’s grandfather’s house, the house his father was born in, and that Ralph intends will remain in the family for generations to come.

The couple led a happy life together, travelling the world, including 35 cruises and countless countries. Ralph says of his wife:

“In our 46 years of marriage I genuinely never heard Beryl talk about anyone in a derogatory way. Everyone who met her liked her.”

Ralph recalls one special trip. “In the mid 90s we were travelling out for a cruise from Bangkok to Sydney and we were flying with British Airways. It was the 25th anniversary of Concorde and there was an in-flight competition to win a return trip on Concorde to New York and Beryl won it. The delight on her face was wonderful. Of course it was a 2 person trip and she had plenty of people badgering her for the 2nd seat. We had a wonderful time, the service was second to none. It was a fantastic, iconic experience, and we have memories that we will always cherish.”

It was on a cruise early in 2014 that Beryl first became unwell and eventually she was diagnosed with glioma, a brain tumour.

Ralph looked after Beryl at home full time and he says “We always looked after each other. I’ve been overwhelmed and have become very emotional when telling friends about the support we received from Helen’s Trust. It’s not until someone becomes sick that you find out about the services that are out there, especially charities.

“It’s not in my character to take advantage of such kindness, but Helen’s Trust offer to fund a carer to come and sit with Beryl on match days, meant that I could use the Season Ticket I had for Chesterfield Football Club.

“I’ve supported Chesterfield FC since the mid 50s. I didn’t miss a match until I left Chesterfield in 1969. Even when we lived away from the area I was still a supporter and went to as many matches, home or away, as I could manage.

“Not having the time out to recharge my batteries would have meant that I would have had to redeem the cost of my season ticket from the club. I would have lost the seat, along with friends I’ve made over the years, as well as the valuable friendships and the interaction during the game with them, that mean so much.

“I was more than appreciative of this time and support from Helen’s Trust. I will never forget their generosity, and hope to pay them back in time, to help others who find themselves in a similar situation.”

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