Ely catering duo offer help to widow in moment of need

PUBLISHED: 13:06 08 October 2018 | UPDATED: 16:06 08 October 2018

Yvonne Dockerill and Patricia Canham became lifelong friends of Ray and Mary Neal.

Yvonne Dockerill and Patricia Canham became lifelong friends of Ray and Mary Neal.

Archant

A kind-hearted catering duo organised the food for the wake of a well-respected Ely lorry driver - 55 years since catering for his wedding.

Ray William Neal passed away peacefully at the Vera James Care Home on July 3. Photo: SubmittedRay William Neal passed away peacefully at the Vera James Care Home on July 3. Photo: Submitted

Yvonne Dockerill and Patricia Canham became lifelong friends of Ray and Mary Neal after catering for their wedding reception and baking a two tier cake at the WI Hall in 1963.

Fifty years later, in 2013, they also planned a celebration for Ray and Mary’s wedding anniversary at Larkfields Community Centre.

When Ray died in July this year, they came to the rescue once again, but this time for a sadder occasion.

Mary said: “Yvonne and Patricia provided our catering for the wake and what was an exceptionally hot day.

Yvonne Dockerill and Patricia Canham became lifelong friends of Ray and Mary Neal.Yvonne Dockerill and Patricia Canham became lifelong friends of Ray and Mary Neal.

“They are true spirits of dedication for mankind and always striving to help.

“They became lifelong friends when they kindly obliged to help out when Ray and I were engaged.

“Ray’s sister worked at Mrs Saunders in Ely, a private school in Egremont, and said that she knew someone who could help.

“Yvonne made my wedding dress consisting of covered buttons down the back and then the two bridesmaid’s dresses with material from Theobolds in Ely.”

Ray peacefully passed away at the age of 82 peacefully at the Vera James Care Home on July 3.

He loved sharing family holidays in caravans, camping and spending time at the chalet near the coast.

“We did in fact celebrate our Emerald wedding in March by going to Hunstanton,” Mary added.

Yvonne and Patricia also cater with friends for the Heartbeat Funds at Papworth Hospital, where Patricia’s husband was a patient.

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