Diamond anniversary for cancer patient with just days to live

Wolverhampton | | Published:

'I said I wouldn't cry. I didn't want to upset all the people here, but in the end I couldn't help myself.'

Janet Jones had plenty to shed a tear about as she renewed her vows on her 60th wedding anniversary, as she has just days to live.

She need not have worried, as there was barely a dry eye in the room during the emotional service.

Janet and Gethin during the ceremony with chaplain Elaine Anderton.

Before the ceremony at Wolverhampton's Compton Hospice yesterday she spoke of her determination that she would live to renew her vows to husband Gethin.

The couple on their wedding day in Willenhall in 1954.

"They can keep knocking that door, but I said I am not going anywhere until I have seen our diamond wedding anniversary," she said.

"And depending how I feel, I might even stay a few days longer."

The short ceremony was conducted by hospice chaplain Rev Elaine Anderton, and was attended by staff and close family members.


"I now feel my life is complete," Janet said afterwards. "If the good Lord will give me a little more time to tell everybody how much I love them, I would very much like that, but if not, I will thank him for the time he has given me with Gethin."

Janet, who is 79, lived at Thorns Road, Willenhall, until she was diagnosed with terminal cancer earlier this year.

The couple were married at St Anne's Church in Willenhall on June 26, 1954.

Janet met her future husband at a dance at St Stephen's Church in the town, and told how she fought off a rival for Gethin's affections. There was another girl, Hazel, who had eyes for him," she said.


Friends and family gather for the poignant service.

"I told her to stay away because I wanted him, but she said 'We'll see about that'.

"I went out of the room, and bought a large custard pie. I asked Hazel if she liked custard pies, to which she replied 'yes'.

"Then I splattered the pie in her face and said 'Well try that one for size and don't come back here again'. Later my Gethin told me I needn't have worried because I was his light and shining star and that I was the one he wanted, and no one else."

'My life is complete' – Janet and Gethin Jones.

Janet, who with her husband's help ran Janet's baby clothing shop in Willenhall, said Gethin, who is now 85, had always made her so happy.

"He has always been so kind to me and has always looked after me.

"I've loved every second with Gethin, I can't imagine having my life without him.

"I know the time will come soon when I am away from Gethin for a bit, and I know he will miss me.But I know one day we will all be back together again."

The couple hold one another during the emotional ceremony.

The couple have no children and Mrs Jones said she had asked her nephew Ralph and his wife Lynn to keep her ashes until Gethin's death.

"When my Gethin is ready to come to me, they are going to put our ashes together and take them to Barmouth where we loved to go.

"The ashes will be thrown into the sea and nobody will ever part us again."

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