He Can't Visit, So Man Gets Creative To Celebrate Wedding Anniversary
His wife is in a nursing home and he can't be with her, but he still made it a point to show her he cares.
Bob and Nancy Shellard have been married for 67 years. Their wedding anniversary was on Saturday. But due to concerns over the coronavirus, Bob wasn't able to visit his wife at the nursing home where she lives in Stafford Springs, CT.
That didn't stop Bob from letting his favorite lady know how much he cares.
Since he couldn't physically get into the building to see Nancy, Bob made a sign that read "I've loved you 67 years and still do. Happy Anniversary." He stood on the nursing home grounds and held up the sign so that she could see it out of her second-floor window.
Nancy waved to her husband and blew kisses when she saw the sweet gesture. She told the nursing staff inside that she felt "like a queen."
Bob said he worked on the sign for about a week before presenting it to his true love. He also brought along a bunch of multi-colored balloons to help cheer her up.
Earlier in March, Connecticut governor Ned Lamont signed an order allowing the Department of Public Health to restrict visiting hours at all of the nursing homes in the state for at least 30 days.
"It makes me feel bad because I want her down with me and I know she can't be," Bob told NBC affiliate WNBC in New York.
This is the first year that Bob and Nancy haven't been able to celebrate their anniversary together. Before the ban was put in place, Bob came to visit her at the nursing home every day.
Nancy has Alzheimer's disease and dementia, so Bob worried that she wouldn't remember that he was there. But he knows how important it is to show up anyway.
"I wouldn't want anybody else," Bob said. "I don't think she could put up with anybody else besides me."
This is the first year out of 67 that Bob and Nancy Shellard could not celebrate their anniversary together. Laura Mikolajczak/Facebook
Bob was joined at the facility by his daughter Laura, one of the Shellards' four children.
"It's just been an example for us, for all of us of kids," Laura said. "So all four of us have really learned a lot from them and I can only hope that I have half as much as what they have shared over the years."
When the story was first posted to social media it quickly went viral, and people shared their own stories of not being able to visit loved ones who are in isolation.
"I have been unable to see my 83 year old father who is at an assisted living facility," Susan Bernstein wrote on Twitter. "We have lived together my entire life and this is the first time we have been away from each other for this long. I am concerned about his health and well-being."
People all over the country are thinking of ways to spend time with their loved ones in isolation. @SusannaMcCoy17
Others shared their reactions to the sweet story and sent well wishes to the couple.
"This brought tears to my eyes," Sandra L Keenan commented. "What a loving husband and a great human being."
It's a story that's at the same time heartbreaking and beautiful. We hope that Bob and Sandra are able to be together again soon!