PHOENIX — While experts say the majority of people who get COVID-19 will recover, some do get very sick and die, leaving behind families to cope with the tremendous loss.
Now one Valley woman is talking about her late husband’s battle with the virus in hopes of raising awareness about COVID-19.
Lesslie Lopez remembers the last time she talked to her husband, Bacilio, while he was fighting the coronavirus in a Valley hospital last month.
“I told him, I said when you get home, I’m going to buy you a cold beer and he nodded yes and he started crying and we all lost it there," Lesslie said. “It’s just hard watching him cry.”
That was their last conversation and the cold beer would never happen. Bacilio did not recover from COVID-19.
“It's hard because they’re dying by themselves," Lesslie said. "I know he was scared to go into that ICU unit. He did not want to die by himself and that’s literally what happened.”
It's a painful reality now for Lesslie and her children, as she says her late husband, also a grandfather, fought a long and hard battle.
“They put him on a ventilator for a few days," Lesslie said. "The day before he passed away, we had actually gotten a call from the doctor saying he looked better.”
Lesslie says Bacilio started feeling sick on June 2. He tried to get better at home, but it didn’t work. Eventually ending up in the hospital, Bacilio would pass away from COVID-19 on June 25, just a few days after his 42nd birthday.
“He didn’t have any underlying issues, he was pretty healthy,” Lesslie said.
The loss is a shock to this family that says they took the recommended safety precautions. Lesslie is a stay at home mom and Bacilio was furloughed from work. Their children lived with them at home too.
“He was really careful, especially for the kids," Lesslie said. "Anything that came through that door he was cleaning it. The kids were washing their hands. We were changing clothes as soon as we got home from the store. I honestly think about it and I don’t know where we could’ve gotten it.”
Now, as the community comes together raising thousands of dollars to help this family, Lesslie wants to share her husband’s story.
“I don’t think anything brings me peace right now, but I know spreading awareness does help me feel better and my kids too," Lesslie said. "And just letting people know that they need to be safe."
A GoFundMe set up for the family has surpassed its goal, raising thousands of dollars.