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Husband and wife on life support say goodbye

A son captures the moment his dying father farewells his mother while she is on life support.
Husband and wife on life support say goodbye

A husband who was admitted to hospital one day before his wife got to hold his wife’s hand in hospital as he passed away. Their son captured the moment in a photograph tells PEOPLE.

Christopher Mininni’s, 21, father, Jim, was admitted to the intensive care unit on April 28 and he thought things couldn’t get much worse, but then they did.

The following day his mother, Cindy suffered a massive heart attack and was rushed to another hospital where she was placed on life support.

Chris spent an anxious few days dashing between hospitals waiting for news of both parents.

“It was frightening,” he tells PEOPLE. “I didn’t know what to do. It was the worst thing ever.”

Three days later Cindy was transferred to the same hospital as Jim, in Ontario, Canada, and Christopher was able to take a photograph his parents together for one last time.’

Jim had battled cancer three times in eight years and had a “do not resuscitate” order. His breathing tube had been removed during a nightmare and the doctors respected his wishes.

“He said, ‘If you can’t save me, don’t prolong my life,’ ” Chris recalls. “Because of his own wishes we couldn’t put it back in.”

The doctors told Chris “there was nothing we can do for your dad” and that “he’ll go for as long as he can go.”

They told Jim that his wife was in the room next door and the man began to panic.

“We told him that mom was now here,” he says. “He started freaking out. But when we told him he wasn’t going to make it he got out a pen and paper and tried to write because he wasn’t able to speak.”

Unable to speak, Jim wrote the word MOM, and the hospital wheeled him into his wife’s room to hold her hand as he took his final breaths and said farewell to his love.

Cindy woke up after 11 days, and grieved for the her husband of 24 years, however Chris says she finds comfort in knowing that they got to be together for one last time before Jim died.

“The one thing that encapsulates my dad in this lifetime is that he loved my mother with all of his being,” he says. “That’s why I love that photo so much – I feel like it shows it.”

Cindy will make a full recovery.

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