Forty years ago, Linda Walsh’s six-year-old son pointed at Kevin Beamin and told her firmly: “I like THAT one.”

Next month, after four decades together the pair will tie the knot to the strains of Etta James’ At Last, with her two sons giving her away.

Linda, 69, from Preston, attends Weldmar’s day services at Trimar after her cancer returned.

She said: “The cancer is never far from your mind and when I’m here doing art it goes away.”

Plans are all set for Linda’s wedding at the Rembrandt in June, and the couple may honeymoon in the New Forest, though she is loath to go far after breaking both shoulders in separate falls.

She said: “My first husband was killed in a car crash, and when I met Kevin we intended to get married but I had a nice pension from my first husband that would have been taken away if we had.

“I always said we’ll get married when I get my marching orders.

“He’s been absolutely fantastic, caring for me – and my friend, who died last week. He made a brilliant dad. He told me initially not to get any ideas, that he would never leave the sea and his Royal Navy job. But then he surprised me by getting a shore job.”

While planning their nuptials Linda has been attending day services at Trimar and making the most of the time she has left.

“I’ve been coming to Trimar for three months,” she said. “I didn’t want to come at first because I didn’t think I was bad enough, but I’ve been very pleased.

“The company is the best thing about it – we have a good laugh and there’s always jokes flying around. I like the quizzes and I love the art.

“I had a couple of strokes and pneumonia at Christmas, but I’m feeling quite well at the moment.”

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