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Chapter 4 Later Years: 2000-2018

A view out of a window towards a pond and a white shed in gloomy winter weather.

Hello and welcome to a new post.

As you can see, we’ve come to the last chapter, in which Charlie tells us about more travels, stories and memories from his later years.

On July 16, 1999 we celebrated our 50th wedding anniversary. We had tents set up in our backyard for an Open House and the Fairfield ladies served a wonderful banquet at the Church Hall afterwards, with about 100 guests. 

When I had my stroke on Friday, September 2, 2005, I was hospitalized for four months. I grew stronger over those months, and was glad to come home on Friday, December 9. The home care workers were so good to help with feeding by tube for the first six months. I still went to therapy every week until I was able to walk with a cane and person support. Margaret took me to therapy, appointments and church.

On January 31, 2008 Margaret and I flew to Florida. Bob and Christa met us at Tampa airport and got us settled into the trailer in Bradenton and then went on their cruise out of Miami. Thursday night of that week, while sleeping in the la-z-boy chair, I had a spell. Margaret had to call the insurance company at 3 a.m. She did not have a thermometer or any other equipment so they told her to call 911. Up came the Fire Department and then the ambulance and I was taken to Blake Hospital, a heart centre out towards the beach. Toward morning my heart rate went down to 30 and that caused some concern. They wanted to put in a pacemaker but the insurance company said ‘no’. Medi-Pac Insurance tried to find a bed in Brantford or Hamilton hospitals and they would fly me home – no luck! Bob and Christa came back Saturday and Bob suggested they try Kitchener. By Wednesday afternoon arrangements had been made and with two nurses, two pilots and Margaret, I was flown in a Lear Jet to Breslau Airport outside Kitchener. We arrived about 12:30 a.m. Thursday. We were put in a room at St. Mary’s Hospital for the night and next day I was checked out by a heart doctor and sent home. No pacemaker! However, I came down with C-difficile and the doctor put us both on medication. That was the last time we went to Florida.

In 2009, we celebrated our 60th wedding anniversary in our Church Hall. I loved to read and I kept Margaret and the librarian busy keeping books on hand for me. When my eyesight got worse after ten years, Margaret read to me. We enjoyed having the family here at the house for Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s, Easter and at times for a Rim-cum-tiddy supper in the backyard. I enjoyed riding the scooter around the yard, and sometimes to the Lumber Yard to see what was what. In 2016, it came time to sell the Florida property. Bob and family have taken it over. On March 13, 2016 my 95th birthday was celebrated with an Open House at the church after the morning service.

We’ll see you in the next post for the speech Charlie gave in 2015 about his life story, which Margaret mentions in her introduction.