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Fire Department helps reunite mother and daughter in nursing home

Photos courtesy Jess Carmine

Shirl Carmine used to see her 83-year-old mother Shirly at least twice a week when she would go to visit her in her Maryland nursing home when she would go and do her hair. But she hasn’t been able to do that for months after the pandemic began.

“It was just so… it was depressing,” Shirl told WMDT.

She says that they have been able to keep in touch electronically, but with her mother’s hearing problems, that made having conversations tough.

But with a little help from their local hometown volunteer fire department that was able to change.


Shirl and her daughter were out getting some food when they noticed a fire truck parked in the nursing home’s parking lot. That gave her an idea.

“I said Jessica stop! I’m going to go ask them if they’ll take me up there!” Shirl said.

To her surprise, they said yes.

“He said what day do you want to do it, or we could do it now, I said we can do it now! I wasn’t letting the chance go by,” Shirl continued.

Within the hour she was standing face to face with her mother just outside her second-floor window.

“For the first time in over 4 months, they were able to verbally talk to one another,” Shirl’s daughter Jess wrote on Facebook.


Shirl says that the visit was short but she thinks it made a world of difference to her aging mother.

“I just told her I loved her so much and I miss her, and I can’t wait to have coffee with her and I want to see her… I just think it brought so much spirit back into her, like life into her… she had so much life in her eyes, it was amazing,” Shirl said.

That was something that Shirl’s daughter said made the whole experience special.

“It’s all about the connection, no matter how small it is,” she told KSL.

“That’s what’s going to get us all through this. For that moment in time in a small town in Maryland, all was well in the world.

“There was no fighting, no hate, no agendas. Just love and harmony. It truly was amazing, the world needs to remember that.”