Son keeps in touch with mother through socially distanced balcony visits | KOB 4
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Son keeps in touch with mother through socially distanced balcony visits

Patrick Hayes
Updated: July 22, 2020 06:29 PM
Created: July 22, 2020 04:09 PM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Like other families who have been separated by coronavirus, Max Mertz needed to find a way to keep in touch with his mother.

Mertz lives in Alaska, but has been spending a lot of time in New Mexico visiting his mother.

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"And course, everything that's been going on with the pandemic, they're locked down so we can't get in and do our normal inside visits,” he said.

Nancy Mertz is 94 years old and her Shih Tzu is 16. The two make their way onto the balcony of Mertz’s assisted living facility for about 30 minutes a day to see her son Max and granddaughter Sarah.

"We're a close family and we've got to be able to continue to interact with one another and, you know, Facetime is OK, but it only goes so far when it's on a screen, so it's much better to be here in person for sure,” Max said.

Like other assisted living facilities around the state, Kingston Residence in Santa Fe is taking precautions to make sure their residents stay safe from the virus. That means in-person visitors are not allowed.

Max said he misses seeing his mother face-to-face, but understands why the precautions are in place.

"You know, we've been very fortunate. Kingston has not had a single case, which is remarkable. They have been really strict on the lockdown which is hard on one hand, but good on the other hand,” he said.

Max plans to return to Alaska, but said he’ll be back next month to check in on his mom, even if it’s from the parking lot.


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