Forced apart by coronavirus concerns, couple of 66 years reunites through glass window

Local News

LUBBOCK, Texas — Walking with excitement, Martin Salazar’s cowboy boots clack against the pavement. It’s a sound his wife, Andrea, recognizes well. The couple has not seen each other in several days amid coronavirus concerns.

Andrea has been living at the Garrison Geriatric Education and Care Center for several months.

“She’s a beautiful woman. Been that way all her life,” Martin said.

Going from seeing each other twice a day, to not all; the couple would stay in contact via cell phone calls.

“We call each other two three times a day. She calls me or I’ll call her. One of the two, but we keep in touch,” Martin said.

A week feeling like a lifetime for the Salazar couple, now able to see each other again through a window. Andrea on one side, and Martin on the other.

“I thank God for my husband, Martin,” Andrea said.

With a single wall, separating the two.

“I was excited. Yeah. At least I get to see her through the window,” Martin said.

Making the most of their time, the couple is willing to make sacrifices to know the other is healthy.

“Very nice people and well trained. They do a good job taking care of my wife,” Martin said.

Thursday morning, Governor Greg Abbott announced visitors could no longer see family members at residence homes, unless to provide critical care. The Garrison center had already been following strict CDC guidelines. The facility required all who enter to fill out a questionnaire and have their temperature taken, said Eric Urban, administrator for the center.

“To tell them that they’re not going to see their loved ones face to face directly it’s a huge impact. And so we as a facility are trying to do what we can to provide Facetime and Skype,” Urban said.

Urban said they have seen many families meet their loved ones through windows. He also welcomes people to drop off gifts and letters.

Governor Abbott’s executive order will go into effect at midnight Friday.

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