Love still smells as sweet for real life 'Romeo and Juliet'

Every day is Valentine's for loved-up couple Colleen and Ted Burgess

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CONNECTED: Married 63 years, Colleen and Ted - dubbed "Romeo and Juliet" by staff at Amana Living's Lady McCusker Home in Duncraig where they live, are happy they are now together in aged care.

CONNECTED: Married 63 years, Colleen and Ted - dubbed "Romeo and Juliet" by staff at Amana Living's Lady McCusker Home in Duncraig where they live, are happy they are now together in aged care.

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After 63 years, every day is Valentine's for loved-up couple Colleen and Ted Burgess

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Every day feels like Valentine's Day when Ted Burgess, 87, and his wife Colleen, 83, are around.

The devoted pair have been dubbed "Romeo and Juliet" by staff at Amana Living's Lady McCusker Home in Duncraig where they live.

Married 63 years, the couple are happy they are now together in aged care.

"Colleen came in before me," Ted said.

"I was coming every day and she would get upset when I left, I would hear the echo of her calling "Ted, Ted, Ted" as I went out.

"It was hard for both of us."

After a series of falls Ted moved in as well.

Colleen is living with dementia but her face lights up when she sees her husband and the pair can often be found holding hands.

The couple met when Ted was 24 and stationed in Kalgoorlie with the Army as a storeman.

"She worked in the local dry cleaners and I took dry cleaning in nearly every day," Ted recalled.

"We would have a bit of a yarn and a joke and eventually I asked her out.

"She was very attractive, always had something to say and had a beautiful smile.

"She still has that same smile and she uses it with the people here."

Ted said the pair enjoyed playing badminton together.

"I taught her to be a good player," he said.

"I used to whack the ball at her and she learned how to duck."

Before marrying in 1957 Ted served in the Korean War and earned a collection of decorations, medals and commendations.

"I was away with the Army at times and whenever I came back, Colleen got pregnant," he said.

Everything was connected with us. We would help each other out, and still do. - Ted Burgess

Together the couple raised five children and have nine grandchildren and two great grandchildren. After leaving the Army, Ted worked in the taxation department.

For her part, Colleen was always community-minded, forming a weekly companionship group to ease loneliness among women in the northern suburbs and earning a volunteer service award for working for the Australian Red Cross for more than 50 years.

"She would help me on Poppy Day and I would help her on Red Cross Day," Ted said.

"Everything was connected with us. We would help each other out, and still do. I have skin problems and she tells me off for rubbing my arms and I make sure she takes her medication."

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