Herbert and Audrey Goodine gave each other a peck on the lips and said goodbye Monday, moments before Herbert was driven to a new care residence about 45 minutes away. (DIANNE GOODINE PHILLIPS/FACEBOOK)

Officials separate husband and wife after 73 years

Officials separate an elderly New Brunswick couple after 73 years: I listened to my mother weep

An elderly New Brunswick couple bid a tearful goodbye this week, separated just days before Christmas after 73 years together.

Herbert and Audrey Goodine gave each other a peck on the lips and said goodbye Monday, moments before Herbert was driven to a new care residence about 45 minutes away.

The couple have been married for 69 years, spending the last three years together at the Victoria Villa Special Care Home in Perth-Andover, N.B.

But after a recent assessment of Herbert’s health, officials decided the home could no longer accommodate him because the 91-year-old’s dementia had progressed to a point where he needs a higher level of care.

Dianne Phillips, the couple’s daughter, said she was told last Friday her father would have to move.

By Monday, a van carried him away to another home in Plaster Rock as Audrey stood by the window and watched him go.

“I feel people need to know what a flawed system we have in place. Two words describe it ‘unethical and cruel,’” she said in a Facebook post.

“This should never take place to another human again.”

Phillips is upset the couple was separated a week before Christmas, saying it’s mentally and emotionally difficult for her parents who had, up until now, shared a room and the same bed at the villa.

Phillips said in the post that she understands her father requires a higher level of care, but felt the facility could have arranged for the couple to be separated after the holiday.

“I listened to my mother weep and I could hear my father in the background,” she said. “My mother said, ‘Christmas is over for us now and this is the worst Christmas that we will ever have. Why could they not have waited till after the holidays.’”

Jennifer Eagan of Victoria Villa told Global News she cannot comment on specific cases due to privacy, but stresses the home is a Level 2 facility for residents who need a little bit of supervision.

Phillips said her father was assessed as being Level 3, while her 89-year-old mother is Level 2.

The couple will be together for Christmas at their daughter’s home in Fredericton.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Ferry Island Campground in Terrace now open to out of province visitors

Decision based on recommendations from the provincial government

Infinite Ice’s holistic hockey program returning to Terrace in August

COVID-19 precautions in place for on-ice training, meditation, yoga and nutrition classes

Ice coming to the Terrace Sportsplex in August

Second sheet planned for October, arena closed to the public for the time being

Provincial COVID-19 data can now be used for B.C. to prepare for a second wave

In the past week, B.C. has seen a slight spike in daily test-positive case counts

Four air ambulance flights out of Terrace delayed or cancelled

Pandemic precautions caused nighttime closure of service station providing weather data to pilots

B.C. records 62 new COVID-19 cases, two deaths since Friday

Province has just over 200 active cases

Hotel rooms for B.C. homeless too hasty, NDP government told

Businesses forced out, but crime goes down, minister says

Wage subsidy will be extended until December amid post-COVID reopening: Trudeau

Trudeau said the extension will ‘give greater certainty and support to businesses’

B.C. government prepares for COVID-19 economic recovery efforts

New measures after July consultation, Carole James says

Tree planters get help with COVID-19 protective measures

Ottawa funds extra transportation, sanitizing for crews

Trudeau apologizes for not recusing himself from WE decision

He says his and his family’s longtime involvement with the WE organization should have kept him out of the discussions

Beverly Hills 90210 star’s family selling Vancouver Island Beach Resort

You can own Jason Priestley’s Terrace Beach Resort in Ucluelet for less than $5 million

Islanders want BC Ferries to follow order that lets residents board before tourists

For ferry-dependent communities, ferries are often the sole practical lifeline to work, school or medical appointments.

Most Read