Age at interview: 97
Ron is 97 years old and lives in an aged care facility in Perth, Western Australia. He is a retired pharmacist and a practicing Catholic and describes himself as Anglo-Australian.
More about Ron
Ron feels fortunate that he has had very good health. He has hypertension and gastric reflux and has had some minor operations in the past but he is otherwise very well.
Ron had not really thought about ageing until in 1991 his wife had a stroke from which she was not going to recover. He realised that he was four years older than her and that he could die before her, which concerned him greatly. He was grateful when his wife passed away before him, an experience which Ron describes as 'remarkable'. He has not been interested in intimate relationships, as he believes he is a 'one woman man'.
Ron was still working part-time and dreaded the prospect of retirement but his wife's illness meant that she needed him around the clock. He sold their house when she needed residential care and lived on his own in a caravan park. He then lived with his grandson in his home for six months. He now lives in an aged care facility and has monthly 'get togethers' with his youngest son and his family.
Ron now spends his time on the computer, reading and playing bridge one or two days a week. He is intensely interested in technology although he would like more explanation about his new mobile phone. He has friends in the area, which is the main reason he relocated to his current facility. There is one friend whom he has known for 60 years. Ron likes being able to help her out with shopping and the like as her family live all over WA. Along with a bit of 'telly' in the evenings, he feels he has all the amusement he needs.
Even though he has never had a lot of money he has travelled a great deal, thanks to his daughter who worked for an airline and arranged discounted airfares for him and his wife before her illness. Ron feels he is now managing well financially as he needs little other than the nursing care he receives.
Ron believes there are many different ways to face ageing and it is important that people try to be happy as they grow older. He believes that this is certainly possible in a situation such as his, given that he is surrounded by people and has so many services available to him.