COVID-19 can’t stop love. After spending nearly two months at Orange Park Medical Center in Florida fighting coronavirus, HCA Healthcare patient Henry Bell and his longtime fiancée, Antoinette Brown, finally said their vows in front of the hospital’s rehab center in the presence of those who had helped get him to the altar.
Henry was admitted on Sept. 13, 2020 and was quickly put on a life-saving ventilator, spending weeks in the hospital’s intensive care unit. Through it all, Antoinette never lost hope. After coming off of the ventilator, Henry’s first and only wish was to marry the love of his life. The couple did not want to wait another minute to say their “I do’s” and insisted that a few special guests attend their ceremony – the caregivers that became family. “We decided to do it now because we feel they [the hospital staff] are like family and wanted to share the life they gave us back,” said Antoinette.
For Henry’s caregivers, the wedding signaled hope and marked a new and incredibly meaningful way to celebrate his COVID-19 recovery. “The whole time he was just so excited to get better and get back to this family,” said speech-language pathologist Kaitlin Trueblood of her patient. “It was awesome to see him be able to stand and get married.”