Residents Celebrate Anniversary Amidst Visitor Restrictions

Ralph blows his wife a kiss at the end of his FaceTime call

Long-term care providers under mandatory restrictions to outside visitors will be tasked with the ongoing challenge of ensuring that residents remain stimulated. As the COVID-19 crisis unfolds over the next several weeks, the St. John’s community will be working hard to keep residents engaged while maintaining those important connections to friends and loved ones outside of St. John’s Home.

Technology will play a key role in keeping residents connected, as illustrated this afternoon by a very special video chat.

Ralph Carr recently moved from St. John’s Meadows to St. John’s Home. Under normal circumstances, his wife Molla—who still lives independently at St. John’s Meadows—would be a regular visitor. With the reality of current visitor restrictions, Molla was unable to see her husband today. Molla can count on one hand the number of times she and her husband have been apart for more than a day since their wedding on March 16, 1952.

Yes, today is Ralph and Molla’s 68th wedding anniversary.

With the help of a couple of smartphones, staff from both St. John’s Home and St. John’s Meadows made sure Ralph and Molla were able to connect on this important day.

“You look good,” Molla said soon after her husband’s image appeared on the screen.

“You look pretty good yourself,” Ralph answered.

“Do I look like a million (dollars)?” Molla asked.

“Two million!” said Ralph.

During a call that lasted about 15 minutes, Molla and Ralph reminisced about their life together. “You know you left me a note every morning and told me you love me,” said Molla, remembering how Ralph would leave messages for her before leaving home for work at 5:30 a.m. “You left it on the table every morning.” Molla even shared with staff members a preserved love note that Ralph had written on their 25th wedding anniversary.

Molla connects with her husband with help from Elder Advocate Cara Rusinko’s smartphone

The call also provided the couple’s son Stephen with an opportunity to visit with his father. In town from California, Stephen is also unable to visit with his father in-person due to mandatory restrictions on visitation.

We are grateful for the ability to employ technology in our efforts to help our residents continue connecting with those who are most important to them. We will soon share further details on a comprehensive plan for how each neighborhood at St. John’s Home will keep those connections strong.




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