Family members mourn a couple in Southern California after they died the same day due to complications from COVID-19.
Alvaro, 44, and Sylvia Fernandez, 42, of Loma Linda, had been together since high school. The parents of four children died on December 19, just hours apart.
“My brother and my sister-in-law, they were very close,” said Salvador Fernandez, Alvaro’s brother. “They were high school girlfriends. They’ve been together since she was 15.
“One could not live without the other.”
The two were married for 25 years. Both tested positive for COVID a few days before their death, family members said. Alvaro Fernandez suffered from underlying disease problems, including diabetes.
Both were unvaccinated, family members said.
“He would wait and do more research,” said Alvaro’s sister Alma Hernandez. “He googled information. He would not believe everything that was in the news
“This is a kind of eye opener for everyone in my family that anyone who has not been vaccinated should definitely have their vaccinations.”
San Bernardino County has reported more than 383,700 COVID cases and more than 6,000 related deaths.
Coronavirus-related hospitalizations have increased slowly in California, up about 12% in the last 7 days to 4,401. That is less than half as many as during the late summer peak and one-fifth of a year ago before vaccines were widely available.
The sudden rapid spread of the virus is blamed on the Omicron variant of the virus, which experts say is easily spread from person to person. Even fully vaccinated people are susceptible to Omicron infection, although health authorities say they are far less likely to become seriously ill, be hospitalized or die.