Local author talks to News 4 about losing his father to COVID-19

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EDMOND, Okla. (KFOR) — A local author spoke to News 4 on Monday, a few days after he lost his father to coronavirus. 

“Kind of numb at the moment. Reality hasn’t really set in,” Patrick Walts said. 

On Friday, Walts said his final goodbye to his dad on a FaceTime call. 

“It was surreal. It almost seemed like it wasn’t happening,” he said. 

His dad, Richard Walts, who was in his 70s, was a former firefighter and fire marshal.

He was diagnosed with COVID-19 just two weeks ago. 

“He was the hospital for two weeks under sedation and on a ventilator,” Walts told News 4. “His heart function was at a 25%. He was just kind of barely hanging on.”

Walts and his mom were forced to make a tough decision, choosing to disconnect him from the ventilator. 

Walts’ mom is also battling COVID-19 in quarantine at home.

At one point, they weren’t sure if she’d be able to spend those final moments with her husband. 

“They did, made an exception and let her in there, got her all dressed up in the PPE and got her in there and she was glad to have been able to spend his last moments on earth with him,” he said. 

Walts took to his blog site over the weekend to write his dad’s story. It’s been viewed over 50,000 times. 

He’s hoping it might help more people take this deadly virus seriously. 

“He lived his life helping people and if I can help people by showing them that this is what happens when you’re not careful, maybe not to you but maybe to your mom, your grandma, grandpa,” Walts said. 

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