From first date dreams to 66 years of love

8 February 2024

From first date dreams to 66 years of love

Raymond (Ray) Insley embraced the joys of youth, surrounded by friends, when he encountered Pat at the tender age of 13. Their initial meeting blossomed into a first date at the now-demolished Chantry Cinema at 14, setting the stage for a lifelong commitment. Ray evolved into a skilled sportsman and cross-country champion, representing Grimsby Harriers and playing football for the Grimsby Town under-21 team under the mentorship of Bill Shankly in the early 1950s.

At 18, Ray faced National Service in the RAF with trepidation, fearing separation from Pat, the love of his life. Thankfully, he was stationed at Theddlethorpe, a mere 30 miles from home, allowing him to make frequent trips to see Pat. Ray recalls amusing instances, like hitchhiking, including an unexpected stint in a car that stopped at a petrol station for cigarettes rather than offering a lift.

Engaged in 1956 and married in 1958 at the age of 21, Ray worked as a builder until retirement, while Pat initially served as a secretary at a local Estate Agent. Following the births of their children Alison, Joanne, and Jamie, Pat returned to work, embracing various part-time roles, including her favorite as a Librarian.

Their family grew within the walls of the home Ray constructed, adapting it to accommodate the evolving needs of their children over 65 years.

Approaching their 75th year as a couple and celebrating 66 years of marriage, Ray and Pat now navigate the challenges of their well-lived lives. Recently settling into Humberstone House, they receive care from the dedicated staff. Blessed with five grandchildren and three great-grandchildren, their lives are a testament to enduring love.

Devoted as ever, they cherish the dream that began on a first date, where the prospect of a shared life and family was just a hopeful vision.

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