A New York City teenager became an orphan after losing both his parents to COVID-19.
Roberto Tobias Jr., 17, is now cared for by relatives after his father, Roberto Sr., and his mother, Loida, both died of the infectious virus within weeks of each other.
The pair both tested positive for the coronavirus in late March, when the city closed and the number of infections increased.
Tobias and his older sister, Beverly, 29, were also affected by the disease, but experienced only minor symptoms.
Roberto Sr. and Loida, however, both suffered from pre-existing conditions, including diabetes, and were admitted to Mount Sinai Hospital in Queens.
Tobias says he was largely left alone in the family home when his parents battled the virus in intensive care.
“That was also quite a difficult period. Just see the house empty, not as lively as it normally would be, “the teen said DELETE News on Tuesday.
Roberto Tobias Jr., 17, became an orphan after his father and mother died of the infectious virus within a few weeks of each other.
Tobias’ father, Roberto Sr., and his mother, Loida, both died of the infectious virus within a few weeks of each other. The couple emigrated from the Philippines in the 1990s
Although the teen was unable to be with his parents due to social distance requirements, doctors eventually had him reunite with his father when his condition worsened on May 30.
“I started breaking down almost immediately. I held his hand, and with my mask on, I kissed him on the forehead, and I had just about my last words with him, ”Tobias told the news network.
A few hours later, Roberto Sr. succumbed. to the disease.
Things got even more tragic for the Tobias family, as treatments didn’t help Loida.
She died on June 30 from COVID-19.
“I was devastated and shocked knowing that I lost my parents exactly one month apart,” said Tobias.
He said his parents had both emigrated from the Philippines in search of a better life.
Tobias is pictured with his older sister Beverly (right) and their deceased parents, Loida and Roberto Sr.
Roberto Sr. and his mother, Loida, both emigrated from the Philippines. The hardworking couple encouraged their children to attend higher education
Loida worked as a nurse at Harlem Hospital, where she may have contracted the coronavirus.
“She was such a small woman, but she managed to pass so many trials and so many achievements,” Tobias told WIS News.
He said his father, Roberto Sr., had worked at the Windows of The World restaurant at the top of the World Trade Center prior to the September 11 attacks.
“I think he has many of the same traits as my mom, and I guess that’s why they worked so well together. He was so compassionate, so hard at work. He was such a resilient person, ”explained Tobias.
Despite the trauma of the loss of both his parents, Tobias is soon starting his senior year at Frank McCourt High School on Manhattan’s Upper West Side.
He has an average grade of 93 and is determined to make his parents proud by attending a top college.
Despite the trauma of losing both his parents, Tobias is soon starting his senior year at Frank McCourt High School on Manhattan’s Upper West Side
A GoFundMe is set up to help Tobias with expenses when he eventually goes to college.
He says he plans to study pre-med and eventually hopes to become a neurologist.
More than $ 68,000 has been raised so far – an amount that left the teenager feeling overwhelmed.
“I want my parents to rest knowing their youngest son will be brought to life and be able to navigate through everything without the need for my parents,” said Tobias.
“My parents were wonderful and lived an exceptional life. They grew up in their own impoverished homes in the Philippines, but they have always had higher education to care for their siblings and parents. Despite the circumstances in which they were born and forced, they managed to continue, “he explained.
Tobias’ story has won the hearts of 1,800 people who donated to his page.
“Stay strong boss! Education can and will open up many ways in your life! I will always root for you, ”wrote a donor.
Another said: “As a parent herself and also someone who has lost both her parents, the pain and sorrow that you can never kiss, hug, talk or see them again is heartbreaking. I wish you the very best in life. May God bless you. ‘
If you would like to donate to the fundraiser of Roberto Tobias Jr., you can click here.
Tobias’ story has won the hearts of 1,800 people who donated to his page