Love conquers all

Jean's final days. Photo: FROM BOOK

By Ava Cashmore

The August of 1966 changed David E. Allen’s life forever.

His beloved wife, Jean, gave birth to their daughter Linda, but in the process, suffered a brain injury so severe that she lost three quarters of her brain’s functioning. The doctors told David that Jean would never recover or emerge from a special hospital again.

David refused to believe the doctor, and proceeded to spend every last dollar on speech therapy and treatments for Jean. They lived in a caravan and he spent every day caring for her, from the day she lost “75 per cent of her brain” at just 23 years old, to the day she passed, at age 71.

For the last 30 years, though he cannot read or write, David has been working on writing down the tragic love story of him and Jean. Today he has a published book, with the help of writer Barbara McCarthy, “Waiting for sunshine, one day at a time”.

When David was asked, “Why did you choose to look after Jean the way you did?”, he said: “We weren’t even engaged yet and she came across the world for me. Of course I stuck by her. As long as you’re together, you can get through anything. We’ve proved that.”

After four years of speech therapy and treatments, as soon as Jean had the capability to say “yes”, David and Jean were married.

“I want this story to inspire people to stay together and you will get through anything. If you can lose 75 per cent of your brain and keep going, anyone can. It doesn’t matter about a house or a car, as long as you’ve got your partner.”

David currently lives in Hampton Park and visits his daughter, Linda, and her own child, two times a week.

He hopes this book will “inspire people doing it tough”, and serve as a loving memory of Jean Allen.

The book is available on Amazon and for immediate purchase on Kindle.