By LISA EISENHAUER
Staffers at Covenant Health in Lubbock, Texas, reunited a 100-year-old World War II veteran who was undergoing care for COVID-19 with his wife of 80 years shortly before his death on Jan. 19.
The regional health system is part of Providence St. Joseph Health.
Virgie Young visits her husband of 80 years, Sterman Young, in his room at a Covenant Health hospital in Lubbock, Texas. They both contracted COVID-19 but Virgie Young was not a patient at the hospital. Hospital staff reunited them shortly before Sterman Young's death on Jan. 19.
Sterman Young was hospitalized for COVID at one of its facilities for several days. His wife, Virgie, battled the virus elsewhere.
On Jan. 18, Covenant Health posted pictures on social media of Virgie at Sterman's bedside. Sterman is in his hospital bed and his wife is next to him in a reclining chair. Both are on supplemental oxygen. In one photo, Virgie and Sterman gaze at each other as she holds his right hand in her gloved hand.
Sterman Young died the next day.
An obituary posted on the website of The Graham Leader newspaper says the pair married on July 3, 1941, when Virgie was 16 and Sterman was 20. Sterman was drafted into the Army and served in Europe during World War II.
Covenant Health posted the photos of the pair's hospital reunion with permission of the couple's family, which stretches to five generations. The system's Facebook post about the reunion was shared more than 1,000 times. Several news organizations reported on Covenant Health's post.
Covenant Health said the Youngs' advice was to love each other and stick together "till death do us part."