Ray Coles believes that the secret to a good marriage is being able to weather the storms of life, a sentiment that could not be more poignant for Ray and his wife June.
After 62 years of marriage, the teenage sweethearts are facing one of the biggest challenges of their life together.
June lives with dementia and is a full time resident at Baptistcare’s Yallambee Residential Care in Mundaring. Yet that hasn’t hindered the love between them, with Ray spending every day and evening with his wife.
Ray has been living in an independent unit at Baptistcare Yallambee Village within close-proximity to June, participating in most of her daily activities as well as joining her for lunch and dinner every day before returning to his own villa to sleep at night.
The dedicated, caring staff and volunteers at Baptistcare Yallambee take care of June’s medical and therapeutic needs so Ray can spend most of every day and part of the evening with her.
However Ray has now made the decision to move into Baptistcare Yallambee Residential Care himself which allows him to spend more time with June but still keep his own identity.
According to Manager Residential Care, Nina Carnaby, the couple are an inspiration to other people living with dementia and their story shows how Baptistcare is always looking for ways to keep people in their care happy and healthy.
“Separating married couples is never the best option, and Ray and June are a great example of how Baptistcare has helped keep them together.”
“June and Ray might sleep in separate places within our facility but they spend almost all day and all evening together.”
“June’s long-term memory is still very good so there is plenty for them to talk about,” she said.
“Ray enjoys spending time with June, and they do activities together and socialise with other residents. Ray especially enjoys helping June with bingo and choir.”