COVID-19 tragedy: UK-based Zim family loses father and daughter in 2 weeks
COVID-19 tragedy has struck a UK-based Zimbabwean family who has lost a daughter and the father within two weeks, while now their mum is in the hospital with coronavirus symptoms.
Gillian Gapare (28) and her father (56) have died from the coronavirus, while the 55-year old mother is hospitalised.
As their mum entered hospital they learnt that their father, Guide Gapare, 56, who lives in Liverpool, had become extremely unwell and tragically lost his life.
Gillian passed away at the family home in Cheshire on the morning of April 4.
The 28-year-old has been described as a bubbly, bright and loving woman by her family.
“I can’t afford to breakdown now, my mum needs me,” said sister, Glenda, 24.
These are the heartbreaking words of a woman who has lost her sister and father to coronavirus.
“She would do everything and anything for her family,” said sister, Glenda, 24.
“She’s now gone but she is still my world, my support system, my best friend, my second mother even and she really felt the full force of how cruel this life is.”
Gillian, who suffered from neuropathic pain and lymphedema, tested positive for coronavirus after previously showing symptoms.
She was informed by NHS 111 to self-isolate and keep away from her mum Angelina Abigail, 55, and younger sister, Glory, 15.
But her symptoms worsened and she collapsed in her bedroom at the family’s Barnton home.
Glenda, who lives in Manchester, has told Cheshire Live of the devastating moment.
She said: “My little sister Glory was holding Gillian’s head up as mum began to do CPR until the paramedics came.
“But they couldn’t get her back.
“My mum carried on doing CPR even when the paramedics left and the coroner arrived – she was begging them not to take her.”
CPR is a medical technique for reviving someone whose heart has stopped beating by pressing on their chest and breathing into their mouth. CPR is an abbreviation for cardiopulmonary resuscitation.
Glenda believes her mum’s symptoms worsened giving her dying daughter CPR.
But the sadness has not ended there for the family.
Glenda explains: “I spoke to Gillian that morning, she said she was ill but she downplayed it, she was laughing with me on the phone.”
Just four days after Gillian had passed away, Angelina became unwell and was taken to Leighton Hospital in Crewe.
Glenda says her father died on 20th April.
“He died last night (April 20) in hospital, there was nothing we could do,” said Glenda.
The sisters have said their father was refused ventilation because he had underlying health conditions.
Now Glenda and Glory have been left alone with their grief as they pray for their mum.
“It is devastating,” said Glenda.
“But because I am the big sister I have to look after Glory. She has been having panic attacks and has not coped well at all.
“I also need to be strong for mum otherwise it may slow down her recovery.
“She is in hospital and has lost her child and the father of her kids.
“We are taking one day at a time, we don’t know how we are going to get over this.”
The family have set up a Go Fund Me Page which was initially created to help cover costs of Gillian’s burial but they’re now organising two funerals.
Glenda said: “These are unprecedented times so we can’t have a normal funeral for Gillian or for my father.
“We can only have 10 people at a burial site and then it is just a blessing, it is not a proper service.
“We are waiting to do a burial for them both when my mum comes out of hospital.”
The family have expressed their gratitude to everyone who has donated to their page so far.
It is believed the deadly coronavirus has taken the lives of dozens of Zimbabweans based in the UK.
In Cheshire there are over 1,800 positive cases of coronavirus and 285 people have tragically died in hospital from the disease.
Many people are losing their lives while their distraught families can only grieve in isolation.
For one family the coronavirus pandemic has had a major impact.
If you would like to support the Gapare family you can visit their GoFundMe page here.
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