A Minnesota couple is proving that love knows no distance or boundaries — not even in a global pandemic.
Beverley Lindell only wanted one thing for her 84th birthday: to see her husband Jerry, who had been quarantined at a local nursing home for safety reasons amid the coronavirus pandemic, NBC affiliate KARE reported.
That birthday wish eventually came true when Jerry returned home from the care facility on March 26 and surprised his unsuspecting wife of 63 years. The emotional moment was captured on video by the pair’s daughter, Loriee Barnes.
“It’s something I’ll never forget,” Jerry recalled to KARE.
Prior to the birthday surprise, Jerry had been staying at Meeker Manor nursing home in Litchfield to receive rehab following a hospital stay, according to KARE. During that time, Beverley was by his side every day.
“The bus would pick her up in the mornings and bring her to the nursing home,” their daughter Loriee recalled to the outlet. “She was pretty much there all afternoon.”
Unfortunately, when COVID-19 started rapidly spreading around the country, the facility closed its doors to visitors in order to protect the residents.
Unable to visit her husband, Beverley was left heartbroken. It was especially difficult because the separation was the longest they had been apart since meeting at age 18 and marrying two years later, according to KARE.
But all that changed two weeks ago when Jerry was released from the facility. The couple’s daughter helped arrange the surprise, driving her dad to Beverley’s house before presenting her mother with some birthday cupcakes.
As she politely thanked her daughter for the treats, Beverley suddenly saw Jerry walk through the door with a bouquet in his hand. Instantly, she was overcome with emotion.
“I can’t hug you!” she told him after shrieking at the surprise. But Jerry reassured her that all was fine, saying in the clip, “Why can’t you? I can hug you!”
The pair then embraced in a long hug as Beverley sobbed of happiness over her husband’s shoulder.
“I got to bring my dad home to my mom, it was pretty cool,” Barnes said of her parents’ heartwarming moment.
The clip also touched the hearts of the Meeker Manor community. Administrator Andrea Ross told KARE that it brought joy to many of the staff members and residents, who have been dealing with the struggles of familial separations.
“It’s hard to find words for it because it is so very special, and now more than ever,” she explained to the outlet.
As for Beverley, she said the moment meant more than she could ever put into words.
“I just thought we weren’t supposed to hug,” she admitted to KARE. “But I couldn’t wait to grab him, so we hugged each other, and I cried and cried and cried.”
“I won’t let him go,” she added as she held onto her husband’s hand tightly. “He’s mine to keep.”
As of Monday afternoon, there have been at least 424,963 cases and 14,613 deaths attributed to coronavirus in the United States, according to the New York Times. In Minnesota, at least 1,154 cases and 39 deaths have been reported.
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