MIDWEST CITY, Okla. (KFOR) – After nursing homes were closed to visitors, one man found solace visiting his wife outside her Midwest City nursing home window. But on Thursday, he discovered the fence was repaired, and he believes it was a personal attack.
Edward McArthur and his wife Lera have been close since high school.
Then a few years ago, she had a seizure and her memory was damaged, even forgetting at first who Edward was. But he visited her almost everyday in her nursing home.
“I guess after coming so often, she just was convinced that I must be the husband,” McArthur said.
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit and his visits to her nursing home, Landmark of Midwest City, were cut off, he found what he believes was a safe way to visit.
He could get through a broken fence and access her window from the courtyard. For the past month, he’s been visiting most days of the week, calling her on the phone while they look at each other through the window
Because of her memory, he must remind her each day why he can’t go in and embrace her.
“It’s really hard for me behind closed doors,” McArthur said. “But when I’m there, I’ve got to stay strong for her, I’ve got to keep her laughing, and as long as I can keep her laughing, it makes me laugh.”
It was a small comfort he said staff knew about, and that he had never been reprimanded for. But on Thursday, he discovered the fence boarded up.
“Oh, I was just…I was just numb at first,” McArthur said.
He believes it was a personal attack over a paperwork dispute after current staff refused to sign his FMLA papers so that he can get time off of work when he needs to care for his wife.
KFOR tried to reach Landmark of Midwest City several times Friday, but messages were not returned.
McArthur said he doesn’t want a fight, he just wants to care for Lera.
“Somebody’s got to do something about this,” he said. “With all this stuff going on, at least have some compassion and let me see my wife.”