CHESAPEAKE, Va. (WAVY) — Ronnie and Pat Worley’s 38-year marriage began with a little bit of charity.
“After Ronnie divorced, my brother-in-law asked if would I go out with him,” she said. “It was a kind of ‘Get him back in the swing of dating.’”
As it turned out, Ronnie didn’t need the practice. He and Pat went out to one late-night dinner and talked for hours.
“Neither one of us ever dated anyone anybody else after that,” she said.
Pat says Ronnie was your classic country gentleman, who loved hunting, building and taking care of Pat.
“We never had a contractor come to the house to repair anything. If we needed it, he built it,” she said. “He was a good husband.”
In 2012, doctors performed a test on a lesion found on Ronnie’s kidney.
“Unfortunately, it was a really aggressive cancer,” she said. “There was really no stopping it, all they could do was try to slow it down.”
Against the odds, Ronnie lived another seven and a half years.
“He walked his niece down the aisle and he went hunting that last deer season before he passed away,” she said. “It was just those final four months when they performed brain surgery on him that he lost his mobility.”
Ronnie’s insurance covered a custom chair to help him get around, but it came too late, arriving just four days before he died last July.
Since then, it’s been sitting in a back room of their home.
“I just never thought how difficult it was reorganizing your life after you’ve lost half of it,” she said.
But as Pat began working through her grief and moving forward, she decided to do something with the chair as well as the other equipment bought to keep Ronnie comfortable.
“There’s too many people out there that don’t have any resources and don’t have any hope of getting what they need to make their life easier,” she said. “He’ll be taking care of one more person.
Moyock United Methodist Church is helping Pat select a person in need and deliver the chair and equipment.
If you’re in need of the wheelchair and other disability aids, email Chet Ryley (firstname.lastname@example.org) with your name, who the chair is for, why they need it and any other details you’d like Pat to know.