A Daughter’s Heartbreak: California mother loses battle to COVID-19

This was Mary Grace — vibrant and full of life — until she lost her battle to COVID-19.

The 69-year old Fil-Am from Southern California was visiting her hometown of Bacolod City, Philippines, for a few months — when the coronavirus outbreak turned for the worst, and the Trump administration began issuing travel restrictions.

So Mary Grace — or Daging, as she was fondly called — rushed to return to the U.S. on March 14th.

Her only child, Icka, said her 69-year-old mother felt a little sick upon her return — she had an itchy throat and mild fever.

They didn’t think much of it until a week after, when her chest tightened and she had a hard time breathing.

So she went to the hospital and found out she was positive for COVID-19.

“So they immediately put her on the plaquenil and azythromycin combo therapy, as well as vitamin c and vitamin b.”

Then they transferred her to the ICU, and put her on a ventilator.

They also had her lay on her belly to relieve the fluid pressure on her lungs.

“The doctor called me and said they were going to do everything they could for my mom, but her chest x-ray wasn’t looking good and that if her heart stops, to just let her go. But I was like, no doctor, you got to advocate for my mom. I need her to live!”

Daging was then transferred to a bigger hospital where she could get ECMO, a lung machine. And Icka was hopeful.

“There was a friendly nurse who allowed me to put her cellphone on my mom’s ear. I was able to yell at her, mom you gotta get better, you gotta fight this!”

But while her lungs were getting some relief, her brain started to bleed.

And just before midnight on April 3rd, Icka and her two girls — whom Daging helped raise — had to say their final goodbyes via Facetime.

“We told her we love her. You know, I told her that I didn’t want her to go. But that I’ll be fine. She can go. The hardest part was seeing the kids say goodbye to her.”

She was a very dedicated ‘Wowo,’ That’s what they called her.

When news got out that Daging lost her battle to COVID-19, there was an outpouring of love and support for Icka.

To this day, Icka can’t imagine life without her mom. They had so many plans together — go to new restaurants, travel the world, grow old together.

“She’s my best friend. She was always there. She watched every ballet show, dance show of mine. I was on the swim team. She was in every swim meet. She was always cheering for me.”

As painful as this loss is for her, Icka knows she’s gained an angel — someone who reminds her to live her life to the fullest day after day — for we don’t know what tomorrow brings.

3 Comments on this post.

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  • Edys
    15 April 2020 at 6:59 am - Reply

    My heart goes out to you Icka and to your precious loved ones. Praying that our heavenly Father fill you with comfort and the living hope that He alone can give. I am deeply sorry for your loss. With God’s love in Jesus Christ, Edys Gauger and family.

  • Nanette Jereza
    15 April 2020 at 9:06 pm - Reply

    Good bye Daging! This isn’t goodbye for good. I should say Till we meet again. I will miss your smile and laughter everytime I pass by ChezRose. Although we didn’t meet often as we did during our Toastmasters days but we remained good friends. I will cherish the good happy memories with you. You are a great,happy kind friend to be with. Love you. Say my warm regards to Elsie in heav en. Till then my friend.

  • Yazminn Muniz Perez
    17 April 2020 at 7:45 pm - Reply

    May God keep this family with strength and peace in their hearts. My condolences to everyone who knew this kind soul.