RIO DE JANEIRO
Vitoria Gabrielle crawled on a regular basis and was beginning to stroll this 12 months with somewhat assist, hanging on to her Four-year-old brother’s arm whereas exploring her mom’s small residence on a cobblestone avenue in Rio de Janeiro’s working-class Piety neighborhood.
The lady with a continuing smile celebrated her first birthday in February, slept and ate nicely and was enthusiastically saying her first phrases: “mamãe” and “vovó” (mama and grandma), stated her mom, Andréa de Sousa.
However after recovering from viral meningitis, Vitoria Gabrielle suffered gastrointestinal issues that despatched her from her mom’s barely furnished hilltop residence again to the hospital a number of occasions for remedy. It was throughout an April hospital keep that de Sousa suspects her daughter was contaminated with the coronavirus that was simply beginning to flow into in Rio and Brazil.
Vitoria Gabrielle died final month — 1 12 months, 2 months and 21 days after she was born — as COVID-19 instances surged in Latin America’s largest and most populous nation, which is now the hardest-hit nation globally after the U.S. for virus instances and deaths.
EDITOR’S NOTE: That is a part of an ongoing collection of tales remembering individuals who have died from the coronavirus around the globe.
Solely de Sousa and the kid’s stepfather have been allowed to attend Vitoria Gabrielle’s funeral in a cemetery the place the gravediggers referred to the kid and others just lately buried there as “little angels” as a result of their lives have been lower brief lengthy earlier than they may sin. No phrases have been stated on the occasion, stored transient to keep away from extra infections; the one sounds have been de Sousa’s sobs.
“My coronary heart is destroyed with the lack of my daughter,” de Sousa, 20, stated later in an interview. “You aren’t able to lose anyone however, a toddler? I’m not used to being with out her. I miss her loads.”
At residence nowadays, de Sousa loses herself as if she have been in one other world, spending a lot of her time gazing at a slideshow on her telephone of images of her daughter set to the tune “Regulation of Life” by Brazilian pop music star Sabrina Lopes.
“Every thing that’s born, dies. Every thing that comes, goes. Right this moment a dream died … On the highway of life, we’re passengers. However God protects each further star within the sky,” Lopes sings.
It was on April 9 when Victoria Gabrielle was admitted to Jesus Municipal Hospital to endure checks to find out why she had been vomiting.
By April 20, de Sousa stated she realized that her daughter was continually drained and having problem respiration, a situation she had by no means suffered earlier than. The kid was put in intensive care on April 24, identified a short while later with the coronavirus and died on Could Four.
A demise certificates that de Sousa confirmed to The Related Press stated her daughter’s causes of demise have been “Bilateral pneumonia, contaminated by COVID-19″ together with a buildup of fluid within the mind and swelling of the liver and spleen.
Whereas de Sousa is satisfied her daughter was contaminated on the hospital, Rio’s Municipal Well being Secretariat stated in an announcement stated it wasn’t attainable to establish the origin of an infection as a result of the virus had been spreading all through Brazil when Vitoria Gabrielle was contaminated. The assertion added that the kid obtained correct care whereas hospitalized.
De Sousa stated her son, Gabriel, had all the time been very near his sister and does not perceive why he hasn’t seen her for therefore lengthy. He simply needs to play together with her.
“He asks about her all day. He says, ”Mother, I miss Gabrielle, why is she residing with Jesus Christ?”
De Sousa added: “And I say to him, ‘God took her, God needed her near him.’ Then he says, ‘Wow, however I wish to go see my sister.’”
“I am asking God for power and it isn’t simple,” de Sousa stated. “So I am taking a look at her pictures and I am actually lacking her.”