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Watch: Man uses bucket truck to see wife in nursing home on lockdown

“We need some good news, here’s some good news."

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Standing inside a bucket truck on Wednesday, a Watertown native slowly rose three floors up, stopping just a few feet outside his wife’s open window at the Maristhill Nursing & Rehabilitation Center in Waltham.

The man hadn’t seen her in weeks since the senior living facility went on lockdown as a precaution against COVID-19. His son, Christopher Avtges, organized and filmed the whole endeavor through a Facebook livestream. 

#operationliftpapou

Posted by Christopher J Avtges on Wednesday, April 8, 2020

“So 61 years of marriage right there, this is what it takes to get them together,” Avtges said in the video. “Desperate times mean out-of-the-box thinking.”

Avtges said they wiped everything down before outfitting his 88-year-old father, who caught up with his wife during the livestream, in a Patriots-themed mask and blue rubber gloves. 

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“This all started with an idea around a bonfire two nights ago and who would’ve thought we would be here,” Avtges said. “I was just sitting around at a socially distant bonfire, of course, and came up with the idea: ‘Hey, how ’bout a bucket truck?’”

To get the ball rolling, he posted to Facebook asking for help. 

“It’s just so amazing that this is what a community can do with a couple phone calls, and you get some friends involved and you can make stuff like this happen,” Avtges said in the video. 

A small audience, all keeping their distance, gathered outside to watch the pair reunite for the first time in weeks. 

“We need some good news, here’s some good news,” Avtges said. “We’re going to make it through this folks, just takes a little creativity sometimes.” 

As Avtges stood by, he called up to his parents, saying “We love you!” And his mother distantly called back, from the third floor of the nursing home, “Love you.”

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