Husband Who Can't Be with Wife During Chemo Treatment Waits Outside Hospital with Supportive Sign

Albert Conner waited outside during his wife's chemotherapy appointment to show her support and respect hospital coronavirus restrictions

kelly harrell conner
Photo: Facebook

Father-of-three Albert Conner has not missed any of his wife’s doctors’ appointments since she was diagnosed with breast cancer in January.

But with hospitals around the country taking increased precautions to stop the spread of coronavirus, Albert was told he wouldn’t be allowed to accompany his wife, Kelly Conner, to her March 30 chemotherapy appointment at MD Anderson in Sugar Land, according to Good Morning America. The hospital had temporarily barred visitors from going inside, they told the couple.

“I didn’t feel right not being a part of it because I had promised her that I would be there every step of the way and I felt like I would be breaking my word,” Albert recalled to GMA.

Kelly assured the family she would be fine driving herself to the appointment, but as soon as she left, Albert and the couple’s children took out a poster board and began coloring it with a sweet message. Albert then drove to the hospital and texted Kelly to let her know he was parked outside.

“As soon as he texted me, I just kind of lifted up in my chair a little bit to peer out the window and he was just right there,” Kelly told GMA of the surprising moment.

kelly harrell conner

When she looked outside, Kelly saw Albert sitting behind his van with a sign that simply read, “I can’t be with you but I’m here.” It also included a drawing of a heart along with a “thank you” to the hospital’s staff.

“It immediately brought tears to my eyes and I felt a love for him right then in that moment, that he would do that for me,” Kelly said.

“I think I kind of gasped and the nurse turned around and said, ‘What’s wrong?’ And then she saw I was looking out the window and she looked out and started to tear up too,” she added.

Albert said a few nurses even came outside to thank him for his kind gesture and message.

“A few of them said I was the reason that they come to work,” he recalled. “The attention made me uncomfortable but it made me feel good and was very touching.”

While the couple said they were initially disappointed to hear the news of the hospital’s visitor restrictions, they understood why it was in place.

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“When you just reflect on everything and think about all the nurses and doctors and other patients, it makes perfect sense,” Albert said. “You really can’t argue it. You just have to support it any way you can.”

As of now, Kelly plans to be finished with chemotherapy in May. The family is holding on to hope that the pandemic will have slowed by then so they can be there with her at the last appointment.

There are now at least 395,090 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the United States, the most worldwide, The New York Times reported Tuesday.

At least 12,786 people in the U.S. have died from coronavirus-related illness.

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments. To help provide doctors and nurses on the front lines with life-saving medical resources, donate to Direct Relief here.

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