It was a Father's Day unlike any before for one Chula Vista man who was recovering at home with family after being on a ventilator for 10 days during treatment for the novel coronavirus.
Michael Weiss shared his survival story after battling COVID-19 for more than three weeks. The virus took a vicious toll on his whole family, sparing some and killing others.
At least five of his family members tested positive for COVID-19, and Weiss and his mother were hospitalized.
News from across California
On Sunday, the father of five said he was still working toward a full recovery. He said he lost 28 pounds in the hospital and was still working on strengthening his lungs.
"This felt like the flu on steroids -- everything hurt, just my fingers, to move my hands hurt," he told NBC 7.
Before being admitted to the hospital in April, his temperature reached 102.7 at one point and his oxygen saturation percentage was in the low 70s. Weiss also has type 2 diabetes.
He spent 21 days in the hospital, 10 of which he was surviving off a ventilator.
"All they did was give me a sedative and that's the last I remember. And then 10 days later I wake up and that time for me was a blink of an eye," he said.
While he was sedated, his mother was hospitalized for the virus and died.
"That was the hardest thing I've ever had to do, was having to tell him that his mom had passed away because his mom was his whole world and just knowing he wasn't able to say goodbye to her," wife Tina Weiss said.
To make matters worse, his uncle also died from COVID-19 complications.
Michael Weiss' son-in-law, his father, his aunt and a cousin also all tested positive for the virus.
They were in the recovery stage, but he called these past months an emotional rollercoaster.
"This is definitely a Father's Day that I won't forget," he told NBC 7. "I think all of us have got a greater appreciation for each other."
The family is not sure exactly who got the virus first but suspect his mother may have caught it while being treated for pneumonia.
"The frustrating part is when you see people not doing what they should be doing as far as social distancing or wearing their masks," he said. "They see the numbers on the news and in the media and I don't think it really registers that there are lives attached to that."