We walked through the University of Rochester campus, and Luther started running again when he spotted the hospital building. I told him to be careful, that it was hot out, but he just said, “Come on, we have to get there.” He refused water, and it seemed that the only thing on his mind was Waverlee.
As he made his way through the hospital hallways, Luther said hello to the staff members as he passed by, but didn’t stop walking.
When he walked in the door of her hospital room, he said to me, “Watch this … baby, give me a kiss.” He kissed Waverlee, and her eyes fluttered. He is proud his kiss can still make his wife happy after all these years.
“That’s my cup of tea, and she’s sweet too,” Luther said, sitting next to Waverlee’s bed.
“He’s always called her that,” Lutheta told me. “He’s always cared about her the way he does [now]. He loves my mom, He’ll do anything for her.”
Lutheta says she tries to find a ride home for her dad as often as possible, especially when it’s hot out. She doesn’t like that he walks six miles alone every day, but her dad is adamant and she lets him do it.
“My dad says it keeps him alive, it keeps him going,” his daughter said. Lutheta also started a GoFundMe campaign for her parents, to help raise money for Waverlee’s hospital expenses.
At the end of the day, Luther leaves the hospital to let Waverlee rest. He gave me a big hug goodbye and told me I was like a granddaughter to him. We just spent the afternoon together, but in Luther’s big heart, that practically made me part of his family.
His six-mile round-trip journey would be too much for many people half his age. But when you’ve walked through life with someone for over 55 years, what’s another six miles? Luther is sad to leave his love, but he knows that tomorrow, rain or shine, he will be walking to see his “sweet cup of tea” again.