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Central Georgia frontline health-care couples reflect on year as Valentine's Day approaches

Two couples from two Central Georgia hospitals say their spouses are what gets them through the day.

MACON, Ga. — With all the losses in the past year, Valentine's Day may be a tough holiday for a lot of people, and many front-line health-care workers are witnessing the loss up close and personal.

Two couples from two Central Georgia hospitals say their spouses are what gets them through the day.

Coliseum Medical Centers' infectious disease specialist Jennifer Hoffman said, "I think when we were residents, it was a little confusing. We'd get a page for Dr. Hoffman and we were like, 'Well, which?'"

Coliseum Medical Centers' cardiologist Jonathan Hoffman and Coliseum's infectious disease specialist Jennifer Hoffman met in college.

Jennifer Hoffman said, "We got engaged senior year of college. Jonathan proposed up on the boardwalk in Atlantic City up in New Jersey where we were going to school."

After getting married in 2004, the two jumpstarted their careers together. 

Jonathan said, "We run down a little bit, try to run down a bit, run cases by one another, and try not to spend the rest of the evening talking about medicine."

Navicent Health's mechanical system manager Bill Mann and Navicent Health's vice president of cardiovascular services Beth Mann say they met online.

Beth said, "We got engaged on a cruise, and then several months later, we got married at the beach down at St. Simons Island."

They've been married since 2015 and together ever since, until Beth tested positive for COVID-19 last year.

Beth said, "I actually moved out of the house and self-isolated for two very lonely weeks."

"Things were hectic during the time that Beth was sick," said Bill. "I think with technology, we were able to stay connected."

Through it all, they're both thankful to have one another -- at work and at home.

Jennifer Hoffman said, "For me, Jonathan has been the key source of support for me, someone who understands really what it is all about and what we are really going through."

Bill Mann said, "This year with Valentine's, it especially highlights that, a lot of people have gone through a lot, but we still have each other."

To them, this weekend is about spreading love and not the virus.

The Hoffmans plan on socially distancing and masking up this weekend for a Valentine's Day dinner, and the Manns are going on a retreat the next weekend, without the crowds.