High school athlete loses both parents to COVID-19 one week apart
In a span of just one week, a 17-year-old high school football player lost both of his parents to COVID-19 in the United States.
Justin Hunter said goodbye to his dad Eugene and mother Angie last week, as per ABC-affiliate WSB-TV last Saturday, Aug. 1.
Hunter’s whole family tested positive for the coronavirus last month. While the student was asymptomatic, his parents began showing alarming symptoms of the disease.
“Their temperatures skyrocketed. They had headaches. Horrible cough,” Hunter was quoted as saying. “They felt very lazy.”
Hunter’s 59-year-old father died on July 26, while his mother passed away last Thursday, July 30 at the age of 57.
The student stated that his parents took every precautionary measure to avoid getting the disease. He also did not know where his family contracted the virus.
“We were a regular family just trying to stay safe during this pandemic,” Hunter added. “When my mom would go to the store, she would be wearing mask and she would be wearing gloves.”
Hunter is a senior at a public high school in Georgia and a linebacker on their school’s football team. The athlete intends to dedicate his senior season to his parents.
“Since I started playing, we always talked about me playing in college and then playing in the pros,” Hunter told the local network. “They would have wanted me to keep going and get a scholarship and my schoolwork done.”
His parents had been married for 35 years. His mom worked as a human resources executive while his father was a talented saxophone player in their community’s church.
The student plans to live with his relatives. Hunter also shared his father’s final words to him.
“Basically, [the last] thing he said was ‘I love you and I’m going to get better and I’m going to keep fighting,'” the son recalled in the report.
Despite his grief and the abruptness of his parents’ passing, Hunter expressed his desire to get past the challenging time for his late loved ones’ sake.
“They never raised me to sit around and feel sorry for myself in any situation, and I just gotta keep going and pushing,” Hunter was quoted as saying. “I know they’re happy up there and that’s what makes me happy.” Cha Lino/JB
The Inquirer Foundation supports our healthcare frontliners and is still accepting cash donations to be deposited at Banco de Oro (BDO) current account #007960018860 or donate through PayMaya using this link.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.