‘Time is gold’: Jacksonville family loses 3 family members to COVID-19 in 1 month

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — A local family grieves the loss of three family members in the last month.

A grandmother, a father and a daughter all lost their battle with COVID-19.

Maricel Bantigue said, “We wouldn’t want this to happen anyone else.”

All were not vaccinated.

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Cousins Leah Bantigue and Brittany Rankin said, “This is like a nightmare for all of us. Every morning we think we are going to wake up, and it’s a bad dream. And it’s not.”

Tomorrow is not promised.

That’s what this family has learned in the last month.

“My grandma passed away Aug. 16. Myra passed away on the 29, and then Uncle Luis passed away yesterday.”

Myra was just 35 years old. Luis was an active, healthy 55-year-old. Eladia was a loving grandmother.

Myra was also 31 weeks pregnant.

Her husband, Wayne Obolsky, said, “As soon as she found out she was positive, not even three days, two days later we were in the hospital, and it all went downhill from there. Our lives changed forever.”

Doctors performed an emergency cesarean section. Myra never got a chance to hold her baby girl. That baby is still in the neonatal intensive care unit, and she’s named Myrabella after her mother.

Maricel Bantigue said, “She was a great friend, a great daughter, a great wife.”

“Uncle Luis is pretty much a second dad for me,” said Leah Bantigue while holding back tears.

And now all they want is to hopefully save another family from the pain and devastation they are now having to face.

Luis’ son Louie said, “Don’t wait until it’s too late. Time is gold. People just need to understand the severity of COVID-19 and how serious it really is.”

>>LINK: More on the COVID-19 vaccine

The family hopes by sharing their story that it will encourage others to go to their doctor and discuss if the vaccine is safe for them.

They believe had their loved ones been vaccinated, they would still be here today.

A GoFundMe has been set up for the family and you can donate by clicking here.