Morecambe couple mark 77 years of marriage - through windows of care home

A Morecambe couple have celebrated their 77th wedding anniversary - but were unable to hug due to the current Covid-19 restrictions.

Monday, 1st March 2021, 12:30 pm
Jack and Joan Russell on their 77th wedding anniversary.

Jack and Joan Russell married on February 26 1944, while Jack was serving in the army.

We reported in 2018 how Jack was among the World War Two veterans to receive the highest French military honour - the Legion d'Honneur - for the part he played in the D-Day landings in June 1944.

The couple went on to have four daughters and now also have numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Jack and Joan Russell on their 77th wedding anniversary.

They moved to Morecambe in 2012, where they both lived with daughter Hazel until Joan, who has Alzheimer's, moved into Fernbank care home in Heysham just before Christmas 2019.

While the Covid-19 pandemic restricts the ability for Jack to see Joan in person, the couple usually use Skype to see each other and chat, but due to a technical issue at Hazel's home they have not been able to get online for several weeks.

Instead, all Jack was able to do was visit Fernbank to wish his wife a happy anniversary through the window.

Hazel said: "It's really sad, all they can do is see each other through the window. Dad can't take mum for a walk or go near her.

Jack and Joan Russell on their wedding day in 1944.

"It's such a shame for their anniversary. Dad said he just wants to be able to give her a hug."

Jack, who is 99, took an anniversary card to show Joan, 95, through the glass doors at the care home during a visit on Friday.

He will hopefully be able to visit Joan in person when the government regulations change on March 8.

Jack and Joan Russell on their 77th wedding anniversary.
Jack and Joan Russell on their 77th wedding anniversary.
Jack and Joan Russell on their 77th wedding anniversary.