Four-year-old Raiden Gonzalez has become orphaned as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Raiden lost his dad, 33-year-old Adan in June and his 29-year-old mum, Mariah, in October. Both parents died of COVID-19 complications within 100 days of each other’s death. The San Antonio, Texas, the kid now stays with his maternal grandmother, Rozie Salinas.
Adan, a truck driver, contracted the coronavirus from a co-worker and died four weeks after being admitted to hospital. Medical personnel that attended to him said he was one of the sickest patients at the hospital during his stay at the medical facility. Mariah, a schoolteacher, was still grieving her husband and planning a memorial for him when she fell ill with the disease and died within a couple of days.
Grandmother Salinas said little Raiden misses his parents and constantly wishes for them to return to him. She said the only way to console the little boy was to tell him that his parents are now angels looking down from heaven and protecting them.
“He misses his mom since he was a mama’s boy,” Salinas said. “Just this morning he told me that he wishes he had his mom back, and he just wanted her back. I mean, what do I tell him? You know, so I just told him that they’re now angels watching over us and protecting us. He’s what keeps me going, just with his friendly and constant reminders telling me how much he loves me. He’s always thanking me for taking care of him, but I’ve just got to think about him. It’s a hard situation to process.”
Although Raiden will be celebrating his 5th birthday in the next few days, a GoFundMe account has been created to generate funds to help him with schooling and upkeep. Salinas said his coming birthday is planned to lift his spirit and give him hopes and stamina in the absence of his parents. A drive-by celebration from bikers in the community, the fire department, and car clubs has been planned to give the little boy a memorable experience with his birthday.
Texas is the first US state to exceed one million COVID-19 cases, with the Texas DSHS reporting 1,014, 160 cases, and 19,470 deaths on Sunday.
“We’ve lost two people now to COVID-19 and I can’t emphasize enough the severity, the seriousness, and the hurt that this pandemic can cause, so wear your mask, be safe,” Raiden’s great-aunt said.