Teenage sweethearts from Oakamoor celebrated their Golden Wedding anniversary at the weekend. Dave and Eve Beaumont have been shielding since before Christmas and marked the milestone anniversary with their two daughters and sons-in-law in their garden at home.
Teenage sweethearts from Oakamoor celebrated their Golden Wedding anniversary at the weekend.
Dave and Eve Beaumont have been shielding since before Christmas and marked the milestone anniversary with their two daughters and sons-in-law in their garden at home.
The celebration – which was interrupted by a thunderstorm – was a double event as it was also Dave’s 71st birthday.
The couple met at Oakamoor Church Youth Club – which was held in the crypt underneath the church – when Dave moved to the village with his family aged 15.
Eve, aged 68, was 13 at the time. She said: “We were just part of a big group of friends at first and then started going out when I was 15 and Dave was 17.
“We got married at Holy Trinity Church, Oakamoor on Dave’s 21st birthday, July 25, 1970.”
Dave followed his mother, Edna Beaumont, into hairdressing, launching his own salon at Tape Street in 1969, before moving to Cross Street in 1973, where David Beaumont Hairdressing is now run by the couple’s oldest daughter Clare Greensmith. The family celebrated 50 years in business last year.
Eve worked at a chemist and then in her mother-in-law’s drapery and clothing business until Clare was born, then she stayed at home to raise Clare and younger daughter Lisa and manage the household.
The family enjoyed holidays in the UK and abroad, including France and America as the children got older, but Eve was plagued by fatigue, coughs and colds, which had been dismissed by her doctor as psychosomatic.
It wasn’t until a trip to Disneyland, LA, that Eve collapsed and was asked by medics at the park whether she had ever been tested for Lupus. A similar incident at Universal Studios a few days later prompted Eve to request a test on her return home.
The family were devastated when the results proved Eve had indeed been diagnosed with Lupus – a long-term condition that causes inflammation of the joints, skin and other organs including the heart, liver and kidneys. There is no cure for Lupus, but symptoms can be alleviated with treatment.
Eve said: “We were absolutely devastated. When the doctors in America asked if I’d been tested for Lupus I’d never even heard of it.
“We went private and that gave us more hope. With the right treatment you can manage to forget the pain and just get on with your life.
“It meant the end of holidays abroad as I could no longer fly, so we bought a caravan and then later, a motorhome.
“We do a lot of motorhome holidays and we love to do that.”
The couple are very close to their daughters and sons-in-law, Clare and Shaun Greensmith and Lisa and Lee Mellor, who have supported them through further turbulent times over the last 20 years.
Dave was forced to retire at 50 when he was rushed to hospital after suffering a perforated bowel. He underwent an emergency operation and Eve was warned she might have to say a final goodbye to her husband. It wasn’t until he’d actually left intensive care and was on a ward that his body threatened to give up, but he managed to pull through.
Several years later, Dave was ill again after lesions formed at the site of his former operation. He was hospitalised for a further five weeks after emergency surgery.
As well as Lupus, Eve has also endured a broken hip, arthritis and osteoporosis, spending several months in a body brace after suffering multiple fractures to her spine. She now uses a wheelchair and an electric scooter to get out and about, with a frame to help her walk short distances.
Eve was prescribed morphine to help with the pain, but a reaction to the drug meant Dave found her unconscious with no pulse, and had to perform CPR until paramedics arrived and she could be treated at hospital. A week later medics tried morphine again, but Eve crashed once more and Dave had to call for help which saved her life. The reaction meant it became impossible for Eve to continue using the painkiller.
Dave slept in a chair for more than four weeks so he could stay near Eve while she was being treated. She spent a further eight weeks at Moorlands Hospital before she could come home.
Through it all, the couple have supported each other and stayed together thanks to a stair-lift, a folding electric scooter and a special lift which allows Eve to access their motorhome, the pair had been able to return to normal life, enjoy travelling across the UK and spending time with their family.
Now though, they have been shielding since before Christmas. Eve said: “We knew the virus was coming and Lupus can affect your immune system, so I knew if I got it that would be it.
“We started shielding at home and then I received a letter from the Government saying I needed to shield for 12 weeks, followed by another warning me to continue for another 12 weeks.
“Our daughters have been amazing, they’ve been doing the shopping and they came to sit in the garden for our anniversary, although they had to go home when there was a sudden thunderstorm.
“We’ve had some amazing times. Lisa once entered Dave for a Father of the Year competition and he won a day driving fast cars including a Formula 1 car, which he loved because he’s a real petrol head. He really wants a motorbike and I’ve told him he can have one, but I haven’t said he can ride it.
“We’ve had some ups and downs health-wise over the years, but we’ve always been there for each other and the girls have been with us as well.
“I think our sense of humour gets us through.
“We’ve had some terrible times, but as a family we’ve always had a laugh and supported each other.”
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