A father of two, from Carmel Valley, died while battling COVID-19 for almost three weeks.
"'Til it hits home, you’re going to realize, and hopefully it doesn’t come to that point, a void that cannot be filled,” said Judy Balsiger, who was married to Dan Balsiger for 22 years.
Juday said Dan, 56, had just come home from a business trip mid-June when he started feeling sick. Shortly later he tested positive for COVID-19.
“He said it felt like a brick in his chest. He couldn’t move. He just felt horrible,” Judy explained. She said Dan isolated himself and was getting medical help via telehealth appointments. He was keeping in touch with family and friends over the phone. Judy said she urged Dan to go to the doctor, but he told her he was recovering and being monitored by a doctor.
"Once you start to feel better, somehow it attacks another organ," said Judy.
"He was never getting better, and we were never getting that text," shared one of Dan's best friend's Steven Welty.
Dan never made it to the hospital. Judy said he died July 8.
Welty and another close friend of Dan's, Randy Rechs, started a GoFundMe page to help with Dan’s daughters’ school expenses.
Welty and Rechs said Dan asked them to spread the word about the severity of COVID-19 before he passed.
“He [Dan] was like, 'Hey, this thing is real. It’s no joke, spread the word. Make sure to take care of yourself. Take care of the family,' and I’ll never forget reading those texts,” Rechs remembered.
Get San Diego local news, weather forecasts, sports and lifestyle stories to your inbox. Sign up for NBC San Diego newsletters.