Couple Fast-Tracks Wedding for Elderly Mother in Nursing Home

May 1, 2020

Estelle McGovern, a 92-year old resident of Linn Health & Rehabilitation in East Providence, had the perfect wife in mind for her son, Mick. She tried for several years to fix him up with her Certified Nursing Assistant, Susan Nestell, but to no avail. Each time she mentioned it to them, they wanted nothing to do with it.

Until one day when Mick came to Linn for a visit, and Susan walked into his mother’s room. It was love at first sight!

Mick and Susan abandoned their December 2020 wedding plans for fear of COVID-19 entering the nursing home where his elderly mother lives and his wife-to-be works. Instead, they held their nuptials outdoors on Saturday, April 18, in the Winslow Gardens courtyard adjacent to the Linn Health building, while Estelle was safely inside the Sunroom behind a closed window just feet away.

The light rain and cold weather didn’t dampen the spirits of the wedding couple and their few family members in attendance. Everyone practiced safe distancing and wore facemasks, coming together for only a brief family photo during which everyone held their breath. The minister was brought in via FaceTime on an iPhone, and Estelle, who is visually impaired, was able to follow along by listening to the marriage ceremony on an iPad indoors. She couldn’t have been more thrilled!

The groom wore a traditional black tuxedo suit and the bride wore a simple white dress. As a group of television cameras and a newspaper photographer captured the scene, the couple became husband and wife.

“It snowed that morning and we thought it was quite fitting, because we were scheduled to be married in December anyway,” stated Mick. “Everything went perfectly – just the way we wanted it to happen.” Susan agreed, echoing how grateful they were to Aldersbridge Communities for allowing the wedding to take place onsite in such a beautiful garden setting. “I always wanted to get married outside. Even though the weather was forecast to be sunny and warm the next day, we just couldn’t wait to become Mr. and Mrs. McGovern.”

Aldersbridge Communities CEO Richard Gamache expressed his happiness for the newlyweds. “In this time of stressful isolation due to the coronavirus, we saw this wedding as an opportunity to celebrate a wonderful milestone in a family’s life. It is a reminder that love triumphs all else that’s happening in the world. Under these extenuating circumstances, to be able to share something positive for a change is like a breath of fresh air to all.”

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