Despite the fact that 31-year-old Chris Salvatore and 89-year-old Norma Cook are immensely different ages, they are the ideal roommates for each other – and the best of friends.
“After a couple 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, who is an actor living in Los Angeles. “I soon learned that she had no family of her own living here in California, was suffering from a long list of health complications, including leukemia and just that week she had to give up her car because she lost her ability to drive.”
The two became steadily closer as Chris kept on volunteering for assignments including her home and therapeutic care.
“I would help her cook meals, drive her to the doctors, banks, pharmacies and even just recently I got the amazing experience to accompany her to vote. We had such a blast these past few years filled with so much joy and laughter.”
His help was needed more than ever when Norma’s health quickly began to decrease once over the last six months. She was hospitalized a few times for pneumonia, asthma attacks, and maintaining dreadful falls in her condo. The bleakest news came when specialists said that unless she was given 24 hour care at home, she would be sent to a state care facility.
Chris made a GoFundMe page which raised over $75,000 for private care — and, above all, welcomed Norma to live with him so he could take care of her and cut her out-of-pocket expenses.
After the two moved toward becoming roommates, they understood it was a perfect match.
“She loves it! I do most of my work at home so I am here most of the time to care for her, so it only made sense to the both of us.”
“She is my adopted grandmother, after all, and I am her grandson she never had.”