With COVID-19 confining many to their homes, people have had to get creative with their celebrations, announcements, and expressions of love. As elderly populations are especially vulnerable to the virus, nursing homes have been hit hardest with orders to quarantine. Many have made the decision to ban visits as they work to protect their residents. But social distance can’t keep these folks from showing up for their loved ones. We’ve collected the most viral stories of people expressing love in the time of coronavirus to help spread a little joy.
A father and son in Minnesota maintained their daily visits, thanks to the son’s creativity. He brought a phone and lawn chair to visit his father outside the window of his care home. A photo of the two has been shared over 240,000 times since care facility worker Sandy Hamiliton shared the touching moment on her facebook page.
Who couldn’t use a little good news at a time like this? Carly Boyd didn’t let the pandemic stop her from sharing news of her engagement with her grandfather, who has been quarantined inside his nursing home. Boyd, a recent nursing school graduate, showed off her ring and “held” her grandfather’s hand through the glass of his bedroom window.
Musician David DeLoach threw a private concert outside after it was placed on lockdown, to visit his mother and bring residents some peace. His mother got to enjoy the show from her balcony as her son performed an acoustic rendition of “Somewhere Over The Rainbow.” He told reporters, “I tried to encourage them, tell them they’re important and they’re not forgotten.”
For the first time in their 67-year marriage, Bob Shellard and his wife wouldn’t be able to celebrate together. In a romantic gesture, Shellard stood on the lawn of his wife’s nursing home with a sign that read “I’ve loved you 67 years and still do. Happy Anniversary.” His wife, who could see the sign through her window, blew kisses in response. She told nursing home staff the gesture made her “feel like a queen.”
The coronavirus has impacted more than a few birthday plans, but it didn’t stop Millie Erickson‘s family from celebrating her century-long life. Though her nursing home has banned visitors, Erickson’s family was able to gather outside her window to sing “Happy Birthday.” The nursing home shared the video, where Erickson is seen wearing a hat reading “It’s my birthday” and holding a sign proclaiming “Today is my 100th birthday!!”