Windsor woman gets her wish, parents granted border exemption

Diane Costello reunited with her parents. (Photo courtesy of Shayla Costello)

Diane Costello finally got to see her parents after fighting to get an exemption for them to cross the border for the past month.

The Windsor woman is in hospice care dying of cancer, and one of her final wishes was to see them and say goodbye. Her family had been fighting for a month to get the exemption to allow Marolyn and Norman Hotchkiss of Michigan to cross the border.

“It was our little light in a dark place, and my family needed that so much,” said Shayla Costello, Diane’s daughter who spearheaded the effort.

Under the federal Quarantine Act, the couple would have had to self-isolate for two weeks after arriving in Canada. However, Marolyn and Norman have their own health problems making self-isolation impossible.

Shayla announced the good news on Facebook Thursday, hours after Windsor West MP Brian Masse took the federal government to task for allowing a U.S. billionaire with connections to the Prime Minister and U.S. President Trump to cross.

Masse is one of many local politicians who took up Costello’s fight.

“In this very sad time, we truly found happiness in knowing that my grandparents were able to come and see my mom,” wrote Shayla on Facebook. “This is such a relief to our family and we can finally be at peace knowing that my mom’s wish came true.”

Manvir Shokar in Windsor-Tecumseh MP Irek Kusmierczyk’s office confirmed Costello was reunited with her parents at the Hospice of Windsor and Essex County Thursday night.

The family hopes their case brings hope to other families fighting to receive exemptions under compassionate circumstances.

“My fight’s not over,” said the younger Costello. “We’re the stepping stone and I’m hoping other families get their wish as well.”