Weeks after the coronavirus lockdown began in New York, Mayya Gil, 91, found her husband on the kitchen floor of their apartment.
Weak with a fever, he had fallen, the first sign of his Covid-19 infection.
For the first 10 days, Ms. Gil cared for her husband, Vilyam, at home with the help of an aide. Then, on April 20, he was taken to New York Community Hospital in Brooklyn, where he spent his last two days.
“They wouldn’t let me see him, and he was too weak to say anything on the phone,” Ms. Gil recalled in Russian during a recent interview. After 68 years together, she said, “we couldn’t say goodbye.”
Ms. Gil met her husband in Kyiv, Ukraine. She, her mother and her brother fled there when she was 12 and their hometown, Khmelnytskyi, was invaded by Nazis. She eventually married Mr. Gil. “We were like one