In the wake of Pres. Donald Trump tweeting how people should not be afraid of the coronavirus, local families who have dealt with COVID-19 firsthand are sharing how the journey hasn't been easy.
“Based on my experience, for him to be taking it so lightly it just angers me,” Ricardo Ferrerya said.
For Ferreyra, his life was his girlfriend, Cassie Martinez. The vibrant and kind 29-year-old recently died from the coronavirus. Martinez’s family told NBC 7 she had no underlying health conditions.
“I don't know what my next day is going to be like, because she's gone and she was my life,” said Ferreyra, who had planned on proposing to his girlfriend of eight years.
As Ferreyra and his family are grieving, they are also trying to make sense of what is happening in our nation's capitol.
“[President Trump is] able to go to the White House and talk about it, and in my case, all I am left with is just, you know, pictures,” Ferreyra said. “So it makes me mad. It does.”
Other families say they're thankful for the chance they got with loved ones they lost.
“My [case of COVID-19,] it was very mild, but I also got to see the other side," said Bridgette Reynoso, a COVID-19 survivor. "My dad -- it was very, very harsh.”
Her father, Hector Reynoso, also survived, but it was after a long battle for him. He was hospitalized for three months, had a heart attack and a minor stoke. Bridgette said that she and her family continue to wear masks -- even at home -- to protect her father.
“If we would’ve gotten him treated earlier on, I believe he would have not been as ill as he was,” Bridgette said.
Ferreyra said he cannot stress enough the need for the community to take precautions and not take the coronavirus lightly.
“Cassandra, she didn't have any pre-existing conditions, and for her to just be in the hospital -- no less than 30, no more than 30 hours -- and then taken away,” Ferreyra said. “It's really not to be taken lightly.”