AUGUSTA, Maine — The coronavirus hit the Augusta Center for Health and Rehabilitation hard. It said 47 residents and 21 staff members tested positive. The nursing home mourned the loss of 8 members.
Saturday however was a different story. It marked 45 days since the last positive COVID-19 case.
The facility decided to hold a car parade. It was an emotional reunion as nearly 50 cars lined up celebrate the facility being COVID-19 free.
"It's time for them to see their families. To see that they are ok,"
Almost every car had signs reading "We miss you." "We love you."
Sisters Jane Kostiw and Maggie Mishoe saw their 97-year-old mom for the first time since March. Their mom tested positive for the virus, but the sisters say she never showed symptoms.
"It's been so hard, but it's do good to lay eyes on her," said Mishoe.
"Just want to hug her. She's this close, but we're not allowed just yet," said Kostiw.
The staff said after separating people, constantly washing hands, and wearing personal protective equipment, they stopped the spread.
The staff said next week they will allow family members to visit outside while socially distancing.
They will also allow small socially distant activities to begin.
At NEWS CENTER Maine, we're focusing our news coverage on the facts and not the fear around the illness. To see our full coverage, visit our coronavirus section, here: /coronavirus