After seven months, a husband was finally able to hug his wife of 66 years at a Texas nursing home thanks to expanded long-term care visitation options. 

“It’s wonderful. I’ve been praying to God that I’d be able to come over here and see her again, and God answered my prayers,” Coy Evans said after seeing his wife, Charsley, who is a resident at the Slaton Care Center in Slaton, TX. Pictures of the Evans’ reunion can be found here

Texas announced expanded visitation at long-term care facilities following the release of new federal guidance in late September that provided a framework for resuming in-home visitation during the coronavirus public health emergency. Facilities in the state have to request approval before opening back up, per state guidelines. 

Slaton Care Center has posted several pictures and videos on its Facebook page that show residents being reunited with their family caregivers. One post features the reunion of the Green’s (pictured above), who also finally got to hug each other after months. They have been married for 64 years.  

Coy, who does not live at the facility, would regularly visit his wife at the facility prior to the pandemic. But after visitations were halted in March, he was only allowed to see her through a glass door at the facility. 

“I’d always come in when she’s in the dining room. I’d come up behind her and pull her head around, give her a kiss,” he said. 

“We got to FaceTime with her a lot. The people here were very gracious to give her a tablet, and we talked to her on the phone,” added Coy, who also supplemented his regularly in-person visits by writing love letters to her daily. 

That all changed in late September. He made his return to the facility where he got to visit his wife in her room, give her a hug and hold her hand  — all while wearing personal protective equipment. 

Though he can only visit her for two hours at a time, Coy said he’ll continue to try and see his wife every day and wait for a vaccine in hopes things will eventually return to normal.