A California mother and daughter known for their inseparable bond died from the coronavirus just hours apart, according to a report.
Letty Ramirez, 54, and her mom Carolina Tovar, 86, succumbed to COVID-19 on April 3 at separate hospitals in southern California, the Los Angeles Times reported.
“How ironic that you could not separate these two women in life and that fate had made it so that they wouldn’t have to be separated after death,” Art Aguilar, who was Tovar’s grandson and Ramirez’s nephew, told the paper.
Both of the women — who typically spent time together cooking watching classic Mexican movies — began having breathing trouble in mid-March, before the family brought them separately to the emergency room at St. Jude Medical Center in Fullerton, according to the report.
Ramirez was admitted first to the hospital, where she was placed on a ventilator and transferred to Providence St. John’s Health Center, the newspaper reported.
But she struggled to battle the illness as she received new diagnoses of diabetes and kidney failure, the outlet reported.
“I just told her, ‘Mom, please keep fighting. We still need you here. We want you to come home,’” her own daughter, Alexis, told the newspaper.
Meanwhile, Tovar’s family was forced to decide whether to put her on a ventilator — which was against the matriarch’s wishes, the outlet reported.
They made the painful decision to respect her request and gathered together on Facetime as she took her last breath.
“She was ready, and we prepared ourselves too,” Alexis said. “We were all still talking to her, telling her we loved her, that we’re going to be OK and she doesn’t have to fight anymore.”
Within hours, Alexis received word that Ramirez’s health was not improving and made the decision to remove her from the machines, according to the newspaper. She died within nine minutes of being taken off the ventilator.
The family again gathered on Facetime to grieve both losses, the report said.
“It was just hard that we couldn’t be together to console one another,” Alexis said.