Touching video shows 90-year-old man bidding his final farewell to his wife with COVID-19

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LAKELAND, Florida – Tears filled the room when a 90-year-old man from Florida arrived in a retirement home in full protective gear to say his last goodbyes to his wife before she died of COVID-19. Sam Reck, of Lakeland, Fla., Had spent the past four months away from JoAnn Reck, his 30-year-old wife, as the state banned visitors to nursing homes.The couple acquired the names Romeo and Juliet from the staff as Sam sat on the balcony of his second-floor apartment and JoAnn, 86, was talking to him from the garden below, according to JoAnn’s son Scott Hooper. But he risked his own health to be with his wife again as JoAnn passed away on Sunday.

“Here is this 90-year-old man, he risked his life to go see my mother, but it was his choice, it is his freedom to do so. He knew what he was risking, ”said Hooper, Tampa ABC affiliate, WFTS.

He said his mother was diagnosed with dementia about a year ago. She contracted COVID-19 last week and developed a fever, cough and fatigue.

“COVID was hitting her so hard and so fast,” said Hooper. “Anyone who has faced it knows what I am talking about because they do not always remember you or they do not know the situation they are in or they think that something strange is happening and you try to tell them that This is not the case. ”

Although most visitors are still barred from entering hospitals, exceptions are made for end-of-life issues. Hopper said there was barely a dry eye in the room as the two hugged one last time.

“It was my wife who recorded the video and I remember everyone in the room crying,” said Hooper. “I remember looking at my wife, she was crying so hard that she could barely hold the camera. It was a very moving moment. “

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