Evan's mom, Julianne, was an NHS employee for the last 30 years and her loss has deeply affected her community.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on April 23, 2020. It has since been updated.
Losing a parent can be the hardest thing a child ever has to go through. For a child, living in these times of fear and anxiety over the global health crisis is a difficult thing to fathom. Moreover, this pandemic is unrelenting and has caused many deaths. Many children of frontline workers have lost their parents. Many children lost their parents since they had an underlying health condition, which led to complications after they got infected. For many others, they didn't even realize that the symptoms exhibited by their parents were from the virus before diagnosis. Some were saved, but many were not, and others continue to suffer.
A seven-year-old schoolboy from, Pentwyn, Cardiff, was left without a mother and a grandmother within a span of four days. What is worse was that his father was also in the hospital fighting for his life from the same infection. The disease has been indiscriminate and seven-year-old Evan Cadby's parents are among the more than two million people who have been infected.
Evan lost his mother, an NHS employee Julianne Cadby, 49, on April 15. Four days ago, Julianne's mom, Joan, 86, had passed away from the same disease. Meanwhile, his father, Chris, 43, continued to be in the hospital, according to the Metro. More information about his father's condition is not currently known.
Julianne had been a business manager at Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services unit for Cardiff and Vale University Health Board. She had been an employee there at the specialist service for 16 years and at the board for 30 years having started as a medical secretary.
"Julianne was a much-loved member of our team, she was extremely warm and caring and would always make time to help and support colleagues,” a statement from the health board said. "Her dedication shone through, playing a central role in all that we do in the service and her focus was always on ensuring we are delivering the best service we can for children and young people. Her loss will be felt by all the many colleagues she has worked with over the years. She is survived by her husband Chris, their son Evan and her brother Ian. We will miss her greatly," the board said, according to the Mirror.
Having lost most of his family, the schoolboy is being looked after by family members and Julianne's friends have set up a fundraiser page for him. The parents from St. Bernadette’s Catholic Primary School in Pentwyn, Cardiff, have come together to help the family in this difficult time.
"We heard the absolutely awful news that Julianne had passed away... Myself and all of Julianne’s friends from year two St Bernadettes would like to help this family as much as we can, and ask you to please dig as deep as your pockets will allow for this lovely family who have endured the worst possible loss," Natalie Lloyd-Hughes, who set up the fundraiser, wrote on the JustGiving page, according to the Independent.
"To Julianne and Chris’s families and friends, we send our deepest condolences and pray for you at this sad time... Julianne and Joan – fly high ladies and rest peacefully in the knowledge your boys will be taken care of," she said.
They raised £25,000 even though they originally set a target of just £1,000, according to the Metro. This shows that people have been touched by Evan's experience and want to help the little boy in any way they can.
Unfortunately, his family is not the only one that has been ravaged by this disease. Many NHS - the national healthcare service in the UK - workers have lost their lives. Julianne is one among the 27 identified NHS staff members who passed away in this recent pandemic. However, the actual number could be much higher. The Press Association news agency has said that at least 40 frontline NHS workers passed away.
Three more nurses have died after testing positive for #COVID19, with the number of NHS staff deaths now surpassing 30 https://t.co/Vf1unHr46O— SkyNews (@SkyNews) April 12, 2020
Meanwhile, healthcare services were unable to provide protective gear to their employees. In the UK, there was an "enormous strain" on the system for obtaining protective kits.
Since asking the question at Downing St press conf, five companies offering PPE have emailed me saying they haven’t had any luck getting responses from officials - will now pass them on as invited to by Gavin Williamson - though wondering who to....— Hugh Pym (@BBCHughPym) April 19, 2020
"Healthcare workers desperately need proper and effective protection now - by whatever means possible," Dr. Chaand Nagpaul, chair of the British Medical Association, told BBC, adding, "This really is a matter of life and death."
Representational Cover Image Source: Getty Images | Photo by Coscaron