Couple separated by coronavirus pandemic finally reunited after more than a year apart

Couple separated by COVID-19 restrictions hope for reunion soon.jpg
Posted at 10:19 PM, Apr 15, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-16 11:09:07-04

CINCINNATI — A local couple unable to see each other in person for more than a year due to COVID-19 restrictions has been reunited.

Judy Lasita is in an assisted living facility, and for the past year, her husband, Vince, has kept in touch via FaceTime – but that’s no match for an in-person visit they are now finally able to experience again.

“I’m very, very happy,” he said. “Very happy.”

No mask can hide their smiles – and no photo can adequately capture the couple’s joy.

“It was emotional to say the least,” the Lasita’s daughter, Mary Ellen Conroy, said. “The first time I bent down and hugged her was the first time I’d hugged her in over a year.”

Vince Lasita said faith and family carried him through what was an incredibly challenging year – unable to see his wife in person and feeling the pain of the pandemic. Since March, the pair have celebrated their milestones separately – their 66th wedding anniversary, Judy’s 88th birthday, Vince’s 90th.

“We know about five or six people who have passed away,” he said. “It was pretty difficult because one of her comments to me was, ‘When am I going to be able to hug you again?’”

Within the past month – now that both are now vaccinated – that wish became a reality. Her family was recently able to see her on her birthday.

“The grandkids got to see her about three weeks ago, and she was really excited about that,” Lasita said.

The family said the team at Little Sisters of the Poor, where Judy Lasita lives, has gone above and beyond to make the couple feel comfortable.

“I think this has just done so much for her and for Dad, too, for both of them,” Conroy said. “They’re so accommodating and they’re just super, super people up there.”

The couple will soon be reunited in the very place that has kept them apart.

“Once I move in, we will be the only married couple in all of the residents,” Lasita said.

At age 89 and 90, their love story gets a new chapter they’ll share together. Vince Lasita plans to move into the facility this summer. They’ll be on separate floors but will be able to visit each other frequently.