96-year-old brokenhearted over missing wedding band
AN ELDERLY woman with Alzheimer's living at Good Shepherd Lodge is heartbroken over the mysterious disappearance of her treasured wedding ring - exactly 69 years after her late husband George placed it on her finger.
Mackay's Carol Single said her mother Ruth, who has been a resident of the aged care facility for more than eight years, is missing her wedding ring, which was attached to a gold chain she always wore, as well as two other items from her room.
After celebrating her mother's 96th birthday, Mrs Single was out of town for two weeks. When she returned to visit her mum on August 13, the ring was missing from the chain and a key that also was attached had been used to remove items, including spare change, from a drawer in her mother's room.
"When I walked into her room she was upset and showed me that her gold ring was missing ... I asked her to give me her gold chain, which easily comes off over her head, for me to check her locked drawer."
Also missing from the locked drawer was a sentimental coin Ruth had carried with her since the Second World War (inset) and a crystal ring holder. The ring is a simple, thick gold wedding band.
Ruth has worn her wedding band for almost seven decades, since she walked down the aisle to marry her husband George on August 13, 1949. The couple met while they were both working at Lindeman Island in their 20s. George sadly died in 1992.
Mrs Single was concerned other items had gone missing previously from her mum's room and was disappointed that she wasn't able to view the footage from a CCTV camera outside of her room.
"I requested to see video evidence from the camera which is outside her room but have been advised this will not be permitted and it is too time consuming for Good Shepherd Lodge to view the footage," she said.
"Senior staff at Good Shepherd Lodge have confirmed that it is impossible for this elderly lady to undo the very strong clasp on her gold necklace and that the wedding ring would have to have been removed from off this necklace, which hung around her neck, by another person," Mrs Single said.
Good Shepherd Lodge chief executive officer Raelene Phillips confirmed this with the Daily Mercury.
Ms Phillips said Good Shepherd Lodge was completing an internal investigation.
"The incident is being investigated internally and has been reported to the police who will undergo their own investigation if they feel this is warranted," she said. "We stand by the integrity of our staff... We respect people's privacy and dignity. I do not want to discuss personal matters publicly."
Mrs Single said she and her mother would just like to have the items returned.
"I just want who ever took her wedding ring off her chain to return it wherever... they can take it to the police, Good Shepherd..." she said.
Any info to Crime Stoppers on 1800333000.