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VIDEO: Surrey seniors commit to one another in ceremony filled with tears and laughter

Ross Staschuk, 92, and Doreen Baird, 88, won’t be living together but they’re only a floor away

Ross Staschuk, 92, and Doreen Baird, 88, made a commitment to one another in front of family, staff and residents at their home at Chartwell Imperial Place in Surrey on Wednesday (Nov. 16).

Only the newly committed couple are not going to live together.

“Just changing everything, you know, at this age, it’s a pain in the butt,” Doreen said.

Not to worry, though, as they are only a floor away from one another.

Ross and Doreen at their commitment ceremony at Chartwell Imperial Place in Surrey on Wednesday (Nov. 16). (Photo: Anna Burns)
Ross and Doreen at their commitment ceremony at Chartwell Imperial Place in Surrey on Wednesday (Nov. 16). (Photo: Anna Burns)

The couple first met when Ross moved into Chartwell Imperial Place in October 2020.

It wasn’t love at first sight, though, because Doreen says she did not know what Ross looked like because he was wearing a mask.

But Ross claims that as soon as they were allowed to take their masks off, Doreen said, “Ooo, I’m not letting him get away.”

What do they love about each other?

“We just click for some reason,” Ross told the Now-Leader. “I don’t know what it is, but it just draws me to her.”

Doreen says she was drawn to Ross’s kindness – plus he makes her laugh.

“I love his sense of humour and he’s very very good to me,” she said.

The pair, who both have children from previous marriages, could not remember the date they became a couple, as things naturally progressed from friendship to dating.

Wednesday’s ceremony on was full of excitement, happy tears and laughter. It was performed by a staff member, which is why they called it a commitment ceremony instead of a wedding. But it had all the looks of a wedding, from vows, rings, first dance and more. The staff decorated the dining room. The couple’s family, along with residents and staff of Chartwell Imperial Place, joined the special occasion.

The chef at Chartwell Imperial Place made the wedding cake and the corsage and boutonniere were donated by 99 Nursery & Florist Inc.

Doreen did not have any dresses of her own, as she had given them away over the years. She borrowed a beautiful blue dress from another resident.

A toast was also made to honour a resident and friend of the couple who had recently passed away.

Ross is smiling as Doreen walks down the aisle at their commitment ceremony at Chartwell Imperial Place in Surrey on Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022. (Photo: Anna Burns)
Ross is smiling as Doreen walks down the aisle at their commitment ceremony at Chartwell Imperial Place in Surrey on Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022. (Photo: Anna Burns)

Ross is saying his vows at their commitment ceremony at Chartwell Imperial Place in Surrey on Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022. (Photo: Anna Burns)
Ross is saying his vows at their commitment ceremony at Chartwell Imperial Place in Surrey on Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022. (Photo: Anna Burns)

Ross and Doreen’s first kiss at their commitment ceremony at Chartwell Imperial Place in Surrey on Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022. (Photo: Anna Burns)
Ross and Doreen’s first kiss at their commitment ceremony at Chartwell Imperial Place in Surrey on Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022. (Photo: Anna Burns)

Ross and Doreen during their first dance at their commitment ceremony at Chartwell Imperial Place in Surrey on Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022. (Photo: Anna Burns)
Ross and Doreen during their first dance at their commitment ceremony at Chartwell Imperial Place in Surrey on Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022. (Photo: Anna Burns)

Ross and Doreen during their first dance at their commitment ceremony at Chartwell Imperial Place in Surrey on Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022. (Photo: Anna Burns)
Ross and Doreen during their first dance at their commitment ceremony at Chartwell Imperial Place in Surrey on Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022. (Photo: Anna Burns)



anna.burns@surreynowleader.com

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Ross and Doreen during their first dance at their commitment ceremony at Chartwell Imperial Place in Surrey on Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022. (Photo: Anna Burns)
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Ross and Doreen cutting their cake at their commitment ceremony at Chartwell Imperial Place in Surrey on Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022. (Photo: Anna Burns)


Anna Burns

About the Author: Anna Burns

I cover health care, non-profits and social issues-related topics for the Surrey Now-Leader.
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