Three-year-old Aldergrove resident Jace had a surprise visit from his self-isolated grandfather during his Quarantine-themed birthday party at home on Wednesday, April 15. (Karli Benetta/Special to the Star)

VIDEO: Self-isolating grandpa finds way to surprise B.C. grandson on 3rd birthday

A birthday hug during the COVID-19 pandemic was made possible with help from a hazmat suit

An Aldergrove grandpa found just about the only way he could see his grandson on his birthday during a pandemic – in a full hazmat suit.

As Jace celebrated being three years old Wednesday (April 15), Douglas Rae –whom he calls “Papa” – couldn’t resist a surprise visit to his quarantine-themed birthday party at home.

Jace’s family of four was disappointed knowing they couldn’t throw him a birthday bash due to a provincial health ban limiting large gatherings to prevent COVID-19 spread.

But they still wanted Jace to have a momentous celebration, said mother Karli Benetta.

“So we had to get a little creative,” she emphasized.

First, they hung a special black and yellow sign, that read: “Quarantine third birthday party! None of you are invited.”

Then, unbeknownst to the household, “Papa came to visit in head-to-toe Hazmat,” Benetta retold.

“He surprised us all,” she said.

It had been nearly five weeks since anyone in their immediate family had seen the grandfather, who was self-isolating out of precaution, due to his age.

But “he wanted to go the extra mile and get a hug from his grandson – in the safest way possible,” Mom explained, saying he had previously acquired the hazardous materials suit from a old job.

Papa made quite the entrance, beaming in an all-blue suit, holding colourful balloons for his grandson.

“Hey! We can have a hug now,” Papa exclaimed, arms-out toward Jace.

“What are you wearing?” The three-year-old questioned him multiple times, hugging back.

“It’s the only way I could hug you,” Papa replied.

Jace’s mother thinks her son enjoyed his intimate celebration, just as much as he would have any other birthday.

He still “doesn’t fully understand why grandpa can’t just give him a hug,” Mom said.

READ MORE: Aldergrove grandpa beats heart attack to celebrate 71st wedding anniversary

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Nanaimo pianist and future doctor honoured for ‘excellence in culture’

Devon Joiner is among this year’s City of Nanaimo Culture and Heritage Award winners

Volunteers on Vancouver Island checking in on seniors during pandemic

United Way reports 2,600 phone check-ins and 1,300 ‘virtual visits’

Nanaimo mayor, in his work as a lawyer, named in lawsuit over client’s will

Leonard Krog administrator of an estate being challenged under the Wills, Estates and Succession Act

B.C. Ferries says Departure Bay-Horseshoe Bay sailings filling up fast

Tsawwassen-Duke Point may be a better alternative between June 4 and 7, says ferry corporation

UPDATE: Missing teen quickly located

Caregivers had been worried about 18-year-old’s safety

22 new COVID-19 test-positives, one death following days of low case counts in B.C.

Health officials urged British Columbians to ‘stand together while staying apart’

Beefs & Bouquets, June 3

To submit a beef or a bouquet to the Nanaimo News Bulletin, e-mail editor@nanaimobulletin.com

Seniors to receive up to $500 in promised COVID-19 emergency aid in early July

The Liberal government first promised the extra help in mid-May, but had to create a new system to deliver the aid

VIDEO: Revelstoke bear wanders into Animal House pet store

Staff got ready to chase it out with a broom

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

280-unit development in Lantzville will proceed to public hearing

Mayor says Clark/Medd properties affect municipality’s future

Man found dead in his tent at Island homeless camp

Facebook posts tell of personal struggles and attempts to stay clean and sober

New study is first full list of species that only exist in Canada

Almost 40 per cent of them are critically imperilled or imperilled and eight are already extinct

Most Read