Janice Dean: Cuomo's COVID nursing home policies robbed my in-laws of their 60th wedding anniversary

Janice Dean’s in-laws both died from coronavirus in New York nursing homes

New York has the country’s highest coronavirus death toll, thanks in part to a government policy requiring nursing homes to admit patients who tested positive for coronavirus.

Thursday, Feb. 11 would have been my husband’s parents’ 60th wedding anniversary. 

Sadly, they aren’t with us this year to celebrate what should have been a tremendous milestone in their lives.

We lost them both to COVID last spring as the virus ravaged their long term care facilities. Their death warrant was signed as an executive order by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo to put infected patients into the places where our most vulnerable resided.

Both born and bred in Brooklyn New York, Michael and Dolores “Dee” Newman were married right before Valentine’s Day on this day back in 1961. 

JANICE DEAN: COVID NURSING HOME DEATHS, CUOMO AND THE TRUTH – MY LATE IN-LAWS GAVE ME STRENGTH TO KEEP GOING

They met through Mickey’s sister Helen and fell in love writing to each other while he was serving in the Air Force, stationed at Hickam Air Force base in Hawaii.

As the story goes, Mickey proposed to Dee in one of those letters, and she wrote back “YES!” 

My husband Sean found stacks of their love notes while he was clearing out their four-story walk-up apartment in Brooklyn after they passed away. This was the home he grew up in with his sister Donna and brother Michael.

After his service in the Air Force was over, Mickey joined the New York City Fire Department and was with them for 23 years as part of Engine Company 323 in Brooklyn. 

NY GOV. CUOMO’S TONE SHIFTS AFTER MONTHS OF CORONAVIRUS LOCKDOWNS

He was a proud member of the FDNY with memorabilia displayed all over the apartment they lived in for over 50 years.

The hardest thing my husband has ever had to do was tell his mom her husband was dead. The news was delivered over the phone since we were not able to see her because of the quarantine restrictions in place. 

Sean says he felt a calling to become a firefighter like his dad.  The smell of smoke in his father’s hair is something he remembers vividly. 

Even with their failing health, they both made it to see Sean get promoted to Battalion Chief in January 2019.

Janice Dean’s in-laws Dee and Mickey Newman attend their son Sean’s promotion ceremony to battalion chief
(Courtesy Janice Dean)

Sean’s mom Dee was a homemaker and had a part-time job working with a dentist in the neighborhood for close to 20 years. 

She was a devoted grandmother who made sure there was always a card and a gift for birthdays, anniversaries or special holidays. 

CUOMO’S BOOK TOUTING ‘LEADERSHIP’ DURING PANDEMIC RELEASED JUST BEFORE HUGE SPIKE IN COVID CASES, PUNDIT NOTES

Sean spoke to his mom every day, and even now, he still feels the urge to call her just to say “Hi,” especially when he is on his way home from work, the time he would usually call to check-in.

Dee and Mickey Newman and one of their grandsons.
(Courtesy Janice Dean)

We lost my husband’s father Mickey first. He was in a nursing home where he was being cared for temporarily for ongoing health issues and dementia.   

I am still haunted by the reality that we were never able to see my husband’s parents before they died, to comfort them, hug them or hold their hands. 

Before he got sick in late March, we got a call saying he was being moved to another floor to allow for more residents to be placed in the nursing home.  

CRITICS MOCK NY GOV. CUOMO’S SUDDEN DENUNCIATION OF LOCKDOWNS, SUGGEST TRUMP HACKED HIS TWITTER ACCOUNT 

From what I know now, I believe those being let in were patients infected with COVID-19.  Gov. Cuomo signed an executive order on March 25, 2020, that allowed hospitals to transfer over 6,000 COVID positive seniors into their long-term care facilities. 

Mickey Newman with his son Sean Newman.

At the time, my mother in law Dee was living in an assisted living facility waiting for Mickey to get better and join her.  We found a nice place that was just minutes away from where we lived so that our family could visit and they would both be cared for.  

Janice Dean’s mother-in-law Dee Newman with her grandsons.
(Courtesy Janice Dean)

The hardest thing my husband has ever had to do was tell his mom her husband was dead. The news was delivered over the phone since we were not able to see her because of the quarantine restrictions in place. 

Heartbroken doesn’t begin to describe her despair.

I told her to hang on, and we would take care of her after the restrictions of the pandemic were lifted. 

Two weeks later Dee was diagnosed with COVID and died in the hospital. 

I remember that it was right before Easter because she asked Sean if he could buy gifts for the kids and to let them know it was from her.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE OPINION NEWSLETTER

I am still haunted by the reality that we were never able to see my husband’s parents before they died, to comfort them, hug them or hold their hands. 

After Dee died, Sean got a call from the hospital to say he was finally allowed to see his mom. But only to view her dead body through a glass window.

Now, I think of all the families almost a year later who cannot see their loved ones in long-term care facilities. 

Our seniors are still dying at alarming rates in nursing homes across New York State. Many of them I believe are getting sick from loneliness, neglect and broken hearts.

Meanwhile, Gov. Cuomo continues his blame game and the cover up of the total number of seniors who died from COVID-19 in nursing homes.

The fight for accountability from this governor, his health department and his administration has not been easy, but a few weeks ago we had some help from New York Attorney General Letitia James when she conducted her own investigation into the state’s  nursing home tragedy and concluded that it “severely” undercounted virus deaths in these facilities and asserted that it was likely the Cuomo administration failed to report them.

As of this writing, the latest information we have shows that at least 15,049 seniors have died after contracting COVID in their nursing homes. That’s an increase of more than 63 percent from what our governor and his health department were officially reporting.

When asked about the attorney general’s report last week, Gov. Cuomo responded by saying:

“Who cares if they died in the nursing home or in the hospital?  They died.”

My response is:

WE care, governor.  Thousands of New Yorkers who lost their loved ones care.

And although there are now lawmakers now on both sides of the aisle who want a top-to-bottom investigation of the nursing home massacre in New York, there are those who are still stonewalling. 

On Tuesday, Democratic State Senator Rachel May, the Senate Aging Committee chairwoman rejected a motion that would have launched a bipartisan investigation into nursing home deaths.

Her cruel response?

“I don’t see the point.”

Here’s what I would like to tell Sen. May: The point, Senator, is to find out why infected patients were put into our family member’s facilities and uncover all the numbers so that this never happens again.

And while I am grateful for the A.G.’s help in looking into this issue, we still need to find out why the governor decided to put COVID patients into their facilities in the first place.

There needs to be a full independent bipartisan investigation into the nursing home massacre so that my husband’s parents and thousands of other families can have some peace.

My in-laws Mickey and Dee Newman deserve that.

They risked their lives unknowingly so that others hopefully will be safer in the future.  Our governor and those that helped spread the COVID wildfire through their facilities need to be held accountable for lighting the match.

And on this day, their 60th wedding anniversary, the one thing that gives our family comfort is knowing that the Newmans are together. 

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

One of my favorite pictures is of Mickey and Dee dancing with each other and smiling. 

Dee and Mickey Newman in an undated family photograph.

I hope and pray as we remember them on this special milestone, they are dancing in heaven, smiling and holding onto each other as the angels surround them in love and light.

CLICK HERE FOR MORE FROM JANICE DEAN

Source: Read Full Article