WEST HOLLYWOOD (CBSLA.com) — Chris Salvatore didn’t have to look far to find the person who would change his life. For the young actor it wan’t a casting director or Hollywood agent.
Norma Cook, 89 lives across the courtyard from Salvatore’s West Hollywood apartment. When he moved in four years ago, the two formed an unlikely friendship.
“So we would have dinner parties. She loves Champagne,” Salvatore said.
Soon Norma’s health started to decline, and there was no family to help her, so Salvatore decided to become her caregiver.
“I would take her to the bank, and I would take her to the grocery store. She loves getting out of the house.”
Salvatore started documenting their escapades on social media. Soon photos of Norma were getting more likes than photos of the handsome actor.
A YouTube video of the two sharing a pizza in Norma’s bed has more than 22,000 views.
“And I always hashtaged them my neighbor Norma and it blew up. She stole the show.”
As the years went on, Norma’s health continued to decline. Last month, she was hospitalized and told she can no longer live alone.
When she comes home she will probably be placed on hospice and she won’t be taken back to the hospital or the rehab center anymore. It’s just that she wants to come home and let go with her cat. Salvatore has been taking care of Hermes since Norma was hospitalized.
Unsure of where Norma would go after being released from this rehab center, Salvatore decided to start a fundraising page.
When asked why she wanted to go home so bad Norma said: “Because I want to go home to die.”
In just 23 hours, he raised more than $30,000 for in-home nursing care. He presented Norma with the check Thursday on what’s supposed to be the most thankful day of the year.
“Thank you thank you so much. I’m so appreciative I get to go home,” Norma said.
Back home to Hermes and Salvatore.
“He’s my grandson I never had.”
An adopted grandson who will never view life the same way.
“She has changed my life,” Salvatore said.