Even though Chris Salvatore, 31, and Norma Cook, 89, are vastly different in age, they are the ideal roommates – and the best of friends.
When Chris Salvatore, 31, moved into a new apartment, the first person he made friends with was 85-year-old Norma Cook and her cat Hermes. It all started with a greeting, and after Chris introduced himself, he and the elderly lady became fast friends. “After a few weeks of saying hello through her kitchen window that looked out onto our apartment complex courtyard, I decided to knock on her door and enter Norma’s world,” says Chris, a Los Angeles-based actor. “I soon learned that she had no family of her own living here in California, that she was suffering from a long list of health complications, including leukemia, and that she had to give up her car just that week because she had lσst her ability to drive.” Chris always äṩṩisted his elderly neighbor with her errands and was available to her whenever she required äṩṩistance.
When Norma turned 89, her health began to deteriorate, and she ended up in the hospital. The only way for her to return home was to have round-the-clock äṩṩistance. However, because she had no one to care for her, her chances of returning home were slim.
As Chris continued to volunteer for tasks involving her home and medical care, the two grew closer. “I would help her cook meals, drive her to doctors, banks, and pharmacies, and I even had the amazing experience of accompanying her to vote recently.” We had such a great time over the last few years, filled with so much joy and laughter.”
His äṩṩistance was required more than ever as Norma’s health rapidly deteriorated over the last six months. She was admitted to the hospital several times for pneumonia, asthma attacks, and dangerous falls in her apartment. The worst news came when doctors informed her that unless she received 24-hour care at home, she would be transferred to a state care facility.
Chris decided to intervene after learning what was going on. He was the only person on whom Lady Norma could rely, and he didn’t want to disappoint her. As a result, the young man launched a GoFundMe campaign and raised $25,000 in just seven hours. A month later, the campaign helped raise $50,000, but because 24-hour healthcare is so expensive, Chris knew he needed to find a more long-term solution.
“The only other option was for her to go into a facility,” said the kind man. “I couldn’t do that to someone who is like my grandmother.” As a result, Chris invited Norma to move in with him. “I’m so glad I was able to give her the gift of spending her final days at home,” Chris said. “I can’t imagine going through the end of your life in a hospital without your friends or pets.”