SAN ANTONIO, Texas – In the span of only months, Raiden Gonzalez lost both his parents to COVID-19, and the San Antonio boy is barely one week shy of his fifth birthday.
“He misses his mom since he was a mama’s boy,” Raiden’s grandmother, Rozie Salinas, told NBC News on Saturday. “Just this morning, he told me that he wishes he had his mom back, and he just wanted her back.”
Raiden’s father, 33-year-old Adan Gonzalez, died June 26 after spending nearly a month in the ICU, and his mother, 29-year-old Mariah Gonzalez, died Oct. 6, only hours after being rushed via ambulance to the hospital, WJLA reported.
“A couple of days ago, (Raiden) said he wishes he could bring (his mom) back,” Margie Bryant, Raiden’s great aunt, told the TV station.
In less than one week, however, Raiden will celebrate his fifth birthday, and Salinas and Bryant are hopeful his community will rally and lift his spirits by participating in a drive-thru “roar and wave” parade.
“We have several truck clubs, bikers, Mustang clubs, classic cars, Jeep clubs, plus the fire department. It’s going to be a huge turnout,” Salinas, who was Mariah Gonzales’ mother, told NBC News.
Because it’s a “milestone” birthday, however, Bryant told WJLA that Raiden has been exceptionally upset “because his mom and dad are not here to celebrate with him.”
Bryant also told the TV station that she is hopeful the community will not only shower Raiden with the support he so desperately needs right now but also do its part to help slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.
“We’ve lost two people now to COVID-19, and I can’t emphasize enough the severity, the seriousness and the hurt that this pandemic can cause, so wear your mask. Be safe,” she said.
Click here to learn more about the GoFundMe account established to assist Raiden.
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