Elderly couple in 'cruel' separation just before Christmas

Herbert Goodine, 91, and wife Audrey, 89, share a final kiss before they're separated.
Herbert Goodine, 91, and wife Audrey, 89, share a final kiss before they're separated. Photo credit: Facebook / Dianne Phillips

An elderly Canadian couple will spend a Christmas apart for the first time in seven decades after a care home said it was no longer capable of looking after the husband.

Herbet Goodine, 91, has been ordered to leave his New Brunswick rest home which he and wife Audrey, 89, have shared for years, because his health has deteriorated too far.

Dianne Phillips, the daughter of the pair, shared the heartwrenching tale on her Facebook page, along with an image of them sharing a goodbye kiss.

The post soon went viral as outrage mounted over the poor timing of the care home's decision.

Ms Phillips said her parents, who have been together for 73 years and still sleep in the same bed, are victims of an "unethical and cruel" system.

"I was notified Friday morning via email and followed a couple hours later by a phone call that my father was going to be removed from the special care home that he is residing at with my mother this weekend," she explained.

"I read this message over several times in disbelief of how can anyone be so cold and cruel to do this a week prior to Christmas.

"My request during the day Friday was to simply extend my father's residency until the end of this week. However, my repeated request was ignored."

Ms Phillips says she and her parents are now waiting for answers "to clarify how something like this could happen".

"My father may have needs, however, like any other citizen he has the right to enjoy his life and spending this season with his wife was part of that," he said.

"The attached picture looks more like punishment than a Merry Christmas… This should never take place to another human again."