Family members are mourning a Southern California couple after they died on 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 Dec. 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 sweethearts. They've been together since she was 15.
“One couldn’t live without the other.”
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The two were married for 25 years. Both tested positive for COVID just days before their deaths, family members said. Alvaro Fernandez suffered from underlying heath problems, including diabetes.
Both were unvaccinated, family members said.
“He wanted to wait and do more research,” said Alvaro’s sister Alma Hernandez. “He Googled information. He didn’t want to believe everything that was on the news
“This is kind of an eye opener for everybody in my family that whoever is not vaccinated definitely should 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 been rising slowly in California, up about 12% in the last 7 days to 4,401. That’s 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 being blamed on the Omicron variant of the virus, which experts say is easily spread from person to person. Even people fully vaccinated are susceptible to Omicron infection, although health officials say they are far less likely to become severely ill, wind up hospitalized or die.