Coronavirus: Woman shows grandfather engagement ring through nursing home window

The elderly are most at risk during the new coronavirus outbreak, but one woman didn’t let that stop her from telling her grandfather she got engaged.

A North Carolina seniors residence has restricted visitation over fears of COVID-19 transmission, but Carly Boyd just had to tell her grandfather she was getting married.

Staff at Premier Living & Rehab Centre had a novel idea.

On March 16, the newly engaged woman greeted her grandfather from outside the window of his nursing home room.

The centre shared two heartwarming photos of Boyd showing off her engagement ring through her grandfather’s window. In the second snapshot, they hold each other’s hands together, separated by a windowpane.

“A resident’s granddaughter tells her grandfather that she’s engaged,” the residence wrote on Facebook. “Emotional and memorable, for sure. Thank you, Carly Boyd, for allowing us to capture this special moment.”

Millions of residents living in nursing homes and other facilities have been stuck indoors with no guests, CNN reports. It’s forced people, like Boyd, to get creative with communication.

“I really wanted to be able to tell my grandfather because he has dementia and there’s no phone in there that he has access to,” Boyd told KOLD-TV. “I just really wanted to make an effort to tell him.”

“It was very special,” Boyd continued. “I got really emotional and really sad and I just put my hand on the window, and he put his there, too. I just told him I love him, and he said: ‘I love you, too, and I hope to see you soon.’”

Boyd said she hopes her grandfather will be at her wedding next year.

According to Johns Hopkins, there are 9,415 cases of the new coronavirus in the U.S. as of March 19, including 93 in North Carolina.

Questions about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:

Health officials say the risk is low for Canadians but warn this could change quickly. They caution against all international travel. Returning travellers are asked to self-isolate for 14 days in case they develop symptoms and to prevent spreading the virus to others.

Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing — very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.

To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. And if you get sick, stay at home.

For full COVID-19 coverage from Global News, click here.

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