28-year-old Moore man battling COVID-19 texts his mom ‘Thank you for everything’ before going into coma


OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – A 28-year-old Oklahoma man remains hooked up to machines in an Oklahoma City ICU after everyone under his roof also tested positive for COVID-19.

“In 28 years, this is the longest I haven’t seen my son,” Kathy Prater said. “And he was so scared to be there because no one can be there with him.”

Daniel Welch continues to be at the mercy of COVID-19 in a medically induced coma for weeks now.

“No parent should have to go through this,” Kathy Prater said.

Daniel’s mother, Kathy, says she was sick first about a month ago. Within day, her two sons also tested positive for COVID-19.

However, Kathy and her youngest son, 25-year-old Zach, were able to recover from the sickness in their home in Moore.

“As I got better, my oldest got worse,” Daniel said.

Daniel’s oxygen levels dropped fast, so his family rushed him to the ER in Norman.

At first, Daniel was alert enough to have his phone, texting his mom “I love you” and “Thank you for everything.”

“Before they did his chest tube, he held up his hands in a heart for us,” Kathy Prater said.

Then, the texts and the calls stopped.

Each day passed and Daniel’s breathing became more and more unbearable.

Then Kathy’s phone rang, but this time it was the doctor.

“She says he took a turn for the worst and we are intubating him,” Kathy Prater said. “And if I don’t get him an ECMO bed, he will not survive.”

Daniel was moved to INTEGRIS Baptist in Oklahoma City where he continues to fight the virus alone.

“I want to go and I want to hold his hand and tell him I love him, and you can’t do any of that,” Kathy Prater said. “You never know if you get that second chance.”

Daniel, who is diabetic, was also diagnosed with pneumothorax, which means a hole develops in the lung that allows air to escape.

Daniel doesn’t have any insurance, so the family set up a GoFundMe account where donations can be made.

Continued Coronavirus Coverage


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