Couple reunited at Ohio nursing home after 7 months apart during pandemic

Nation & World News

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) — A couple is back together again now that Ohio nursing homes are allowed to have outdoor visits.

After seven months of not seeing each other, Julius Zeigler said his wife, Margaret, was a sight for sore eyes Monday.

“Old eyes, too,” he said.

Julius Zeigler lives at Park Vista senior community in Youngstown, Ohio.

“To me, he looks great,” his wife said. “I’m just so glad to see him. It’s just been too long.”

The Zeiglers, both 83, have been married 62 years. This was the longest they’ve ever been apart.

Gov. Mike DeWine banned visitors from nursing homes on March 12 because of the coronavirus threat to the older population.

He had been told how the loss of contact can hurt residents and was urged to lift the restrictions as soon as possible.

“This is something none of us has ever been through before. This is nothing any of us have ever experienced. There’s no protocol so the buzz is real. This has been tough on families, I think both mentally and physically,” said Chuck Ridge, with Park Vista in Youngstown.

Margaret Zeigler said it’s been difficult. She’s cried many times and called their daughter in Pittsburgh to help her get through it.

Kelly Rozzi helped arrange the Zeiglers’ special meeting.

“Oh my goodness,” Margaret Zeigler said. “If I ever see Kelly, activities director, I’m going to kiss her.”

The main thing Julius Zeigler wanted to tell his wife?

“That I still love her,” he said.

The couple took advantage of every second together. Though they couldn’t touch, it was still good, and they were already thinking about the next meeting.

“Can she come over again tomorrow?” Julius Zeigler asked.

Margaret Zeigler asked her husband if he would marry her again. He said, “Of course.”

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