ROWLAND HEIGHTS (CBSLA) — A San Gabriel Valley family is grieving after a mother and her daughter both lost their battle with COVID-19 on the same day.
“They would go get their nails done, you know,” Mario Tovar said. “They would hang out a lot.”
Tovar said his sister and mother were so inseparable in life that it was hard to not take their deaths as a sign.
“It was only, I would say, right that they both left together,” he said.
But even with that in mind, the simultaneous loss of both his mom and sister was a heartbreaking shock.
“My mom probably said, ‘I don’t wanna go by myself, so I’m gonna take you with me,'” Tovar said.
Letty Ramirez, 54, and her 86-year-old mother, Carolina Tovar, died just miles apart at two different Southern California hospitals.
Letty spent weeks on a ventilator.
“That ventilator was at full capacity, and she still couldn’t breathe,” Tovar said.
He said doctors recommended a ventilator for his mom, but she refused.
“She didn’t want to go out like that,” he said. “She said, ‘If it’s my time to go, it’s my time to go.'”
Carolina was diabetic and on dialysis. Letty was also diabetic, but was not diagnosed with the chronic condition until she contracted COVID-19. Doctors put her on 24-hour dialysis, but her kidneys still failed.
Letty also suffered from asthma.
Tovar believes their preexisting health conditions made it nearly impossible for them to survive the virus.
“If you have underlying conditions, it makes it even deadlier,” he said. “It makes it worse.”
Letty, a mother of three, was married to her husband for 30 years. Carolina, a mother of eight, was married for 75 years.
And there’s been little physical comfort for the family coping with immeasurable loss.
“We can’t even hug one another,” Tovar said.
Letty’s husband was also hospitalized with COVID-19, but is said to be recovering.
A GoFundMe page has been set up to help the family cover the costs of funeral services for the two women.