The moving moment when the couple married for 69 years held hands for the last time when they said their final goodbyes
Looking lovingly into his wife’s eyes, a man grabs her hand as they lie side by side in two hospital beds for one last goodbye.
It would be the last time that John and Marjorie Wilson would be together for the ultimate ‘beautiful moment’ in their 69-year marriage.
Yesterday, a photo of their tearful farewell was revealed by their son Kurt as he paid tribute to their eternal love.
He said he would never forget the moment his father, 92, could see 88-year-old Marjorie before dying of cancer a few days later.
John Wilson and his 69-year-old wife, Marjorie, are grabbing hands for their emotional final goodbyes
John and Marjorie Wilson introduced each other halfway through their 69-year marriage in 1976
In late May, Mr. Wilson was informed that he had been diagnosed with cancer while his wife was being cared for at Queens Hospital in Burton-upon-Trent, Staffs.
Nurse Emma Barker quickly arranged for the couple’s beds to be pulled together, knowing that this was the last chance they had to see each other again.
And the compassionate nurse was able to capture the emotional scenes on camera while the devoted couple held hands for about 10 minutes.
Unfortunately, it turned out to be their last shot together, and John died at home in Ashbourne, Derbyshire on June 15, while Marjorie was fired to her nursing home.
The couple’s 62-year-old son said he would cherish his parents’ “ beautiful ” photo forever and “ couldn’t thank the hospital enough. ”
The international truck driver, who quit his job to take care of both his parents, shared how Marjorie had beaten coronavirus and pneumonia before his father died in hospital.
Kurt said: “They had been married for 69 years and were very much in love.
“My mother has dementia and had been in a nursing home for a while, and I took care of my father at home.
Ward Sister Emma Baker pushed their beds together so they could hold their hands again
“He went to the hospital in February where they discovered he had pancreatic cancer. He was told it was terminal on his birthday on March 28
“At about the same time, my mother was taken to hospital with pneumonia.
“Usually they took her to Derby Hospital, but since my father was in Burton, I asked if she could come there and they agreed.
“I haven’t been able to see her since Mother’s Day because of a termination, and while she was in the hospital, she contracted coronavirus.
“The nurse acted admirably, they knew this was the last time they saw each other, and I couldn’t visit. It was just amazing what they did.
“I was able to talk to my father when he came home for the last few days. He was a very personal man, but he told me how much it meant to see her one last time.
“I know he was very happy to see her and share that beautiful moment.
The Wilsons’ son, Kurt, sent a thank-you note to the hospital at that special time
“After defeating the virus and pneumonia at the age of 88, my mother is now back in a nursing home in Rosliston.
“But because of the dementia, I didn’t tell her her father died. I wait until I can see her in person to tell her and soon after the funeral will take place.
“It was a difficult time, but I was so grateful to the hospital that I was prescient about taking that photo for our family.
“I can’t thank them enough.”
Glasgow-born John and Marjorie, from the Black Country, met and lived in Dudley, where they married in 1951 before moving to Sutton Coldfield, West Mids.
John, a builder and carpenter, and Marjorie, a catering manager, later had two children and moved to Ashbourne, Derbys.
Kurt wrote a letter to the hospital thanking them for capturing the priceless moment and allowing his father to “die the way he wanted, peacefully and in my arms.”
He added: “Thank you all so much for the loving care and attention that you have given to both my parents
“I want to say a special thank you to Emma, who was presumptuous for the last time taking a picture of Mom and Dad together.
“Again, words are not enough to express my gratitude to all of you.”
Sister Emma said that the decision to ensure that the family had the lasting memory was a decision she made spontaneously.
She added, “I can’t even imagine what it’s been like to be married to someone for over 60 years and know you will never see them again.
“Everyone was crying at the picture when they saw it – it was very emotional and powerful.
“Hearing how happy the family was after receiving this photo really touched us all and the letter they sent was so beautiful.
“The whole reason you become a nurse is to take care of people and have moments like this.
“Now to know that Mr. Wilson’s son will have; not only this photo, but also the knowledge that his father saw his mother for the last time will remain an important memory for me.
“I like to treat all patients as if they were my family and I know I would feel very humble if I knew someone had done that for a family member of mine.”