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Saturday 24 February 2018

Elderly man weeps after phone company recover voicemail from late wife

Clare Cullen

Clare Cullen

An elderly man broke down in tears after it was revealed that his phone company had recovered a treasured voicemail from his late wife.

Stan Beaton(68) kept a voicemail message made by his wife for fourteen years to keep her alive following her death in 2003.

The recording was made two years before her death and Stan refused to change phone company ever since in case the message would be removed.

"I’ve always resisted changing companies because whenever I mentioned that my wife’s voice was our voicemail message and would it be retained and each company said no, so that’s why I never changed".

Last December, an upgrade to his phone line caused the message to disappear.

"I was absolutely devastated by it, but also extremely angry".

For the last twelve years, Stan had listened to the message any time he missed his wife.

“In the early days [I listened to it] quite often. Basically, it came to the point when if I felt low then I would listen to it".

"In December I learned that it had disappeared. I just could not tell people how it affected me at that time. It really did devastate me".

In January, a team of engineers from his phone company, Virgin Media, told the BBC they were attempting to recover the deleted audio.

Rob Evans, executive director of engineering at Virgin Media, told the BBC that the "chances of recovery were slim".

However, the team succeeded in recovering the voicemail message and BBC Radio Leeds headed to Stan's house to break the good news.

Stan cried as the message was played to him. "They’ve made this old-age pensioner extremely happy".

"It’s just a wonderful, wonderful sound that I thought was lost forever".

Virgin Media pledged to make a series of charitable donations as a further apology to Stan.

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