Man loses mom, dad and brother to COVID-19

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Alfonso Rodriguez Jr. was close to his parents, and he visited them at least twice a month.

"My parents were big into family. Everything they did all their lives were for family," said Alfonso.

His 86-year-old father, Alfonso Rodriguez, and 87-year-old mother, Porfiria, were married for 68 years. They had five children and then adopted three of their nieces and nephews later in life, for a total of eight children

When Alfonso visited his father in May, he noticed he was sick.

Not long after, he was hospitalized in Fort Bend County and they learned that he tested positive for COVID-19.

A few days later, Alfonso's mother became sick and she was later hospitalized.

"I called him and I said, 'Dad, I've got bad news for you.' I said, 'Mom's there in the hospital too. We're taking her to the emergency (room).' And I remembered he cried, but he understood.

Alfonso's brother, Rudy, also lived with their parents. He had a stroke seven years prior and was not able to talk or walk well.

Soon after, Rudy was also hospitalized with COVID-19.

The three family members were all on ventilators and all battling COVID-19.

Rudy passed away shortly after his diagnosis.

Alfonso told ABC13 he was making funeral arrangements for his brother when he received a phone call from the hospital.

"We were sitting there and they told me that our mom had passed away while we were doing arrangements for my brother," he said.

Alfonso said the news was devastating. But 10 days later, he received another call saying his father had also passed.

His sister Irene also tested positive for COVID-19, but she later recovered.

Alfonso said the hardest part was not being able to be with his family.

"It's not so much that they passed away. What bothers me is they passed away all alone. There was nobody there with them. We didn't get to say our goodbye," said Alfonso.

He said his parents and siblings all took care of each other. Rudy made sure his mother took her medicine while his dad cooked and took care of his mom.

Alfonso said his father was concerned about what would happen if he passed away, and the impact it would have on Rudy and his wife.

"It's like God took care of all of them all at the same time. They're taking care of each other now. We don't have to worry about that," said Alfonso.

He said he just hopes his family's loss is a message to others to take the virus seriously, wear a mask and stay home.

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