It seems a Canadian woman with terminal cancer will get her final wish: to be reunited with her American fiance. Charles Emch had been unable to see Danielle Larocque since the US-Canada border was closed to most travellers back in March. Though exceptions are now made for immediate family members, the couple didn't have documentation to prove their common-law status (which means living together for at least a year) as they previously moved between 81-year-old Emch's home in Pompano Beach, Fla., and 67-year-old Larocque's abode in Ottawa, reports the CBC. But after weeks apart, Emch grew impatient. He showed up at the border on Monday with photos, a shared phone bill, a written history of the couple's five-year relationship, medical records showing Larocque has terminal uterine cancer and less than a year to live, and his own quarantine plan.
It was enough. Emch was allowed entry into Canada on the condition that he quarantine for two weeks before seeing Larocque. Larocque's daughter, Tara Vidosa, thinks he must have encountered "a very down to earth, compassionate agent," per the CBC. "I was elated," says Emch. "We have hopes that we are going to be able to spend some quality time together." The couple also hopes to keep fighting for other binational families separated as a result of the pandemic. The Advocacy for Family Reunification at the Canadian Border Group says there are thousands, per Global News. "It's absolutely heartbreaking what's happening," Vidosa tells the CBC. The outlet separately reports that New Yorker Timothy Martin House, 61, is unable to visit his ailing 85-year-old mother in Toronto as only dependent children count as immediate family under travel restrictions. (Read more uplifting news stories.)