Dementia patient featured in touching trumpet video was COVID-positive, has died
Published Friday, April 3, 2020 7:15AM PDT Last Updated Friday, April 3, 2020 9:07PM PDT
VANCOUVER -- A Vancouver man featured in a touching video posted by his daughter last week has died.
Garry Monckton lived at Haro Park, a care home in the city's West End that is one of 23 in B.C. experiencing an outbreak of novel coronavirus.
The home is one of the most impacted in the province. The latest numbers posted on the centre's website suggest there are more than three dozen positive cases, and eight people have died.
While Garry's cause of death has not been confirmed, his daughter said he was COVID-19 positive. He was living with dementia and had been blind since his daughter Samantha Monckton was a little girl.
“I’m trying to hope, to believe that he now – because he’s blind, right – I’m hoping that he can see,” she told CTV News Friday. “Playing the bratty teenager was my thing and I’m just going to miss doing that.”
Samantha said in the days before his death he didn’t eat much, then “the last day he had a cup of water and apparently later on in the evening he had four cups of ice cream, went to sleep and didn’t wake up. He went exactly how he wanted to, with a belly full of ice cream.”
Samantha Monckton brought tears to some eyes with a touching show of affection for her father last week.
She said trumpet was a familiar sound in her home growing up, and she knew it would bring her father comfort.
Admittedly, she said, she's not great at playing, but it didn't stop her from holding an impromptu concert on the sidewalk outside of Haro Park.
On Friday, provincial health officials announced another B.C. care centre had been affected by COVID-19, bringing the total number of facilities with outbreaks to 22.
“That includes a total of 176 of our cases and really reflects the difficulty we have in outbreaks in long term care,” said Dr. Bonnie Henry, B.C.’s provincial health officer.
The first outbreak began the week of March 2, at the Lynn Valley Care Centre in North Vancouver. It took at least two weeks for the province to stop health care workers from moving between care homes, potentially spreading the virus, a move that’s been called a monumental task.
“So, the orders have been automatic in the case of facilities where there are outbreaks. And then we're working through systematically with everybody involved, the other facilities,” Health Minister Adrian Dix said Thursday. “That's going to take time both on the side of the workers and the side of people running the facilities.”
At Haro Park, visitors were still allowed and residents still dining together in groups on March 15.
But Samantha doesn’t hold any blame.
“It’s not something that’s anybody’s fault,” she said. “It just proved to me that Haro Park and the people there are my family and the way they took care of him was, to me, the absolute best thing.”
With files from CTV News Vancouver's Angela Jung and Andrew Weichel.