Sarah Simental had just celebrated her 18th birthday last month and was looking forward to graduating from high school next spring, when COVID-19 suddenly took her life earlier this week, just days after she complained of headaches and congestion.
Simental, from Tinley Park, Illinois, lost her battle with the virus on Sunday, less than a week after receiving her diagnosis.
Parents Deborah and Donald Simental said Sarah was an otherwise healthy teenager with no underlying medical conditions before the coronavirus wreaked havoc on her body.
‘She went into cardiac arrest, she had a brain bleed, it was deteriorating her kidneys, it just ate her through,’ Deborah told WLS-TV. ‘No parent should ever have to watch their child go through that. Nobody.’
According to the married mom-of-two from suburban Chicago, it all started a few days before Christmas, when Sarah first complained of mild cold-like symptoms.
But the high school student’s condition rapidly deteriorated and her mother took her to get a COVID test on December 19, which came back positive the next day.
Over the next three days, Sarah continued adding new and increasingly concerning symptoms, including vomiting, chills and body aches.
Her parents rushed Sarah to Silver Cross Hospital two days before Christmas, but her health continued rapidly declining, and she was eventually airlifted to University of Chicago Medical Center, according to reporting by the Chicago Tribune.
‘I know she fought because one of the last times I was able to talk to her on the phone, they were taking her from the regular room to ICU and she said “I am going to be OK, mom,” and that was the last thing,’ Deborah recalled.
Despite the doctors’ efforts to save her, Sarah passed away on December 26, less than a week after her COVID diagnosis.
The Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office has determined that the high school student died of acute hypoxic respiratory failure due to COVID-19 infection, with non-traumatic cerebral hemorrhages as a contributing factor.
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SOURCE: Daily Mail, Snejana Farberov