28-year-old Oklahoma man passes away from COVID-19

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OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Family members say a 28-year-old Oklahoma man has died following a battle with COVID-19.

For weeks, 28-year-old Daniel Welch was in a medically-induced coma after being diagnosed with the novel coronavirus.

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

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

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,” she 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, who was diabetic, was also diagnosed with pneumothorax, which means a hole developed in his lung that allows air to escape.

Family members told KFOR that Daniel passed away on Sept. 26.

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