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

RCMP escort beaver across busy Chilliwack road

Motorists had to exercise patience as the slow-moving creature crossed several lanes of traffic

Rail traffic starts moving after 60-car derailment near Hope

The 60 cars carrying potash crashed along a rail bridge, clean up is ongoing

Cardio, weight room to re-open Monday at Hope rec centre

Arena, pool still closed as regional district works on phased approach to re-opening

‘Top secret’ demolition derby continues 52-year tradition in Hope

Sunday derby drew 19 cars, but no crowds in an event used to thousands of spectators

Fraser Valley foursome to hike 70km over mountains in memory of friend

Friends from Abbotsford and Langley to hike from Hope to Tulameen for Brook Morrison

Record-breaking 165 new COVID-19 cases diagnosed in B.C. in 24-hour period

Fifty-seven people are in hospital battling the novel coronavirus

One injured in South Surrey shooting

Shots reported in area of 194 Street and 34 Avenue

Report raises questions about COVID outbreak that killed 25 seniors at Langley Lodge

CEO defends leaked document that’s igniting queries about BC’s most deadly COVID outbreak

B.C.’s COVID-19 economic recovery plan: Top 5 things you need to know

Jobs training, tax incentives for employers to hire staff and more

March to protect old growth, stop industrial logging coming to B.C. Legislature

Organizers say they want to give frontline communities a bigger say in nearby logging

B.C. releases details of $1.5B economic recovery plan, $660M in business tax incentives

Economic plan includes support for employers, as well as training for workers

‘Not criminally responsible’ hearing slated for man convicted of Abbotsford school stabbing

Gabriel Klein was found guilty in March of killing Letisha Reimer, 13, in 2016

Most Read