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Nurses help dying elderly couple spend final hours together on their 66th wedding anniversary

Nurses help dying elderly couple spend final hours together on their 66th wedding anniversary
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Hearts were breaking all over the UK on Thursday after a story emerged of nursing staff pulling out all the stops to make sure a dying elderly couple could spend their final hours together on their 66th wedding anniversary.

Ron Bilton was being treated for multi-organ failure at the Hull Royal Infirmary when his wife, Mary, was rushed into the same hospital in the final stages of cancer.

When nurses discovered through the couple's granddaughter that they were in the same hospital, they arranged for Mary and Ron to be transferred to the same ward so they could be together for their final hours.

Mary sat at her husband's bedside holding his hand until he passed away. Several days after Ron's death, Mary also passed away.

"We were determined to do everything we could so they could be together at the end," Sister Rosie Featherstone said.

"We know it made a real difference to Mrs Bilton that she could be with him and she was able to sit in a wheelchair at the side of his bed holding his hand before he died."

The couple will be buried together at a joint funeral.

The hospital staff involved in arranging for the couple to be reunited in their final hours have since been nominated for a Moments of Magic award.

"We have a great team in the department who always put their patients at the centre of everything we do," Stacey Healand, the senior matron on the Department of Elderly Medicine, said in a statement. "We're very proud of what the team achieved on behalf of Mr and Mrs Bilton and their family."

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