A married couple from Los Angeles have died from coronavirus one day apart, leaving their five children orphaned.
A married couple from South Los Angeles have died from coronavirus one day apart, leaving their five children orphaned.
Humberto Ruelas-Rivas, 60, died on Sunday, a day before his 38-year-old wife Karina Bonilla succumbed to the deadly virus, KTLA reported.
Their five children aged between two and 17 will now be raised by their 35-year-old half-sister Maria Ruelas.
Ms Ruelas is also taking care of her younger sister who was hospitalised with coronavirus and suffered a stroke.
"Within six days, I lost my father," Ms Ruelas said.
"And within eight hours, I lost my stepmother. And now I have five kids."
Ms Ruelas believes her stepmother contracted the virus at her workplace. Her boss, a fruit vendor, allegedly had symptoms but decided not to self-isolate.
"She went to work and in less than a week she started presenting symptoms," Ms Ruelas told KTLA.
"She went home and then my father started getting sick."
The woman said she can't farewell her family members properly as the virus is still present in their bodies.
"I hope this story doesn't repeat again. It's devastating," she said.
Ms Ruelas who is engaged to be married is now applying for legal custody of her younger siblings.
"I'm happy to do it in the memory of my father," she said.
As California gradually eases COVID-19 restrictions she urged all Americans to take the pandemic seriously.
"I saw a lot of [people] without masks. That terrified me," she said.
"That virus took my family away."
The US surpassed two million confirmed coronavirus cases on Wednesday night.
More than 112,000 people have died from COVID-19 across the US.
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Source: 9News https://www.9news.com.au/world/coronavirus-la-couple-die-a-day-apart-leaving-five-children-orphaned/32f51879-4d96-430f-851b-ab6a843fbdeb