No country is spared from the coronavirus pandemic. People are left wondering when this madness is going to end so that they can get to their old way of living again. But will we be able to ever live as we did before the spread of this virus? No one knows for sure, because as we hear of more and more people dying from it, we become more and more frightened and isolated from one another.
What we need to understand is that behind all those numbers we are presented with every day for the past couple of months are real people who lost their lives and were completely alone when leaving this world.
Joe Lewinger began experiencing COVID-19 symptoms around St. Patrick’s Day and died from complications of the virus just two weeks after the diagnosis.
His wife, Maura, wasn’t allowed to be by his side but doctors were kind enough to let her FaceTime with Joe. He passed away listening to their wedding song and Maura telling him how much she loved him and how much he meant to her.
“I played our wedding song for him. And then that was it.”
Maura shared her family’s devastating story with CNN’s Erin Burnett and opened her heart and soul. She says how Joe was a very healthy man and how his mild symptoms turned severe in a very short time.
Joe was a respected member of the community and worked as an assistant principal and a basketball coach for the catholic school team in Long Island where he and his family lived. This man was a father of three and described by everyone as loving, devoted, and caring.
After he was admitted to hospital, Joe was given anti-malaria medications to treat the virus, but his condition only worsened as days passed by. Maura was heartbroken she couldn’t be by his side during those tough times, but eventually, she found a way to show him her support and love using FaceTime.
“The country is getting used to remote learning and we had to get used to virtual caregiving and virtual marriage in just being there for each other,” she said.
“I saw him and I begged him not to leave us and told him we all need him,” Maura added.
As the family stayed home, they were waiting to hear some good news and hoped Joe would be back home soon, but that didn’t happen.
“We have thrown the kitchen sink at him and I’m afraid he doesn’t have more time,” the doctor told Maura.
She then asked to FaceTime with her husband for one last time.
“I thanked him for being the most amazing husband, for making me feel cherished and loved every single day,” she said.
Moments later, Joe passed away.
Maura is now begging others to stay home and help in the fight against the deadly virus that left her children without a father.
“People are just not being careful. People are being so invincible-feeling and they think it can happen to them,” she said. “You cannot, cannot, be with people that are not in your house. As sad and lonely and everything that is, you must, must stay with only the people in your house.”
We are deeply saddened by this family’s loss. Rest in peace Joe.