IN MEMORY: (front) Donna Tanner, Debbie Harris, Leanne Cassidy, (back) Lyn Polson, George Hoath, Toni Tanner and Geoff Sullivan with a picture of Marg Fraser, who passed in September.
IN MEMORY: (front) Donna Tanner, Debbie Harris, Leanne Cassidy, (back) Lyn Polson, George Hoath, Toni Tanner and Geoff Sullivan with a picture of Marg Fraser, who passed in September.

Taralga residents gone but not forgotten thanks to touching ceremony

MARG Fraser started every day she spent at Taralga Retirement Village the same way, with a chat with facility manager Lyn Polson in the sun, where they’d talk and laugh, and begin both their days on a high.

It’s these special moments Ms Polson has sorely missed since Marg passed last month. But the memories of those conversations and jokes shared will always remain, and this week were celebrated in a special ceremony to commemorate the residents who had passed away in the last 12 months.

“It’s important for the staff to have an opportunity to grieve,” Ms Polson said.

“We get so close to them. They’re just so much a part of our lives, day in day out.

“We’re caring for these people and we become their family.”

Taralga staff and residents celebrated the lives of Marg as well as Elaine Seng and Jim Myres by gathering together to share anecdotes of their beloved friends and family members.

As Amazing Grace rang out over the courtyard at Taralga, staff, residents, and family members released balloons in tribute to their loved ones who had passed on.

Ms Polson told the Dalby Herald it was important for the staff to go through their own grieving processes, and to be able to commiserate with the families impacted by the loss.

“The families are able to share that time with us,” she said.

“We form relationships with the families as well. It just made sense to me.

“Because it’s such a small facility it doesn’t happen often, but when it does it has such a huge impact on staff that they need to be able to have that time to grieve.”

Ms Polson described the losses to the centre as “huge”.

“For something so small like this, with 22 beds, the impact is just massive,” she said.

To Ms Polson, the entire facility should be able to pay their respects in their own way, and the centre does this in their own unique way.

“As a mark of respect to the person and a mark of respect to the residents, we tell our residents that someone has passed,” she said.

“We have a guard of honour. We all stand in the hallways, the residents, staff, kitchen staff, the lot, and we say goodbye to them as they leave.”

With a hand-knitted pair of gloves as a keepsake and a reminder of Marg’s memory, as well as plenty of stories of Elaine and Jim, Mr Polson will now ensure the memories of past residents will never go forgotten.

Plans for a memorial garden have begun so the memory of these residents will lie in the place they loved with the people who loved them forever.


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