The woman died due to complications even after taking all precautions, except the vaccination. "Getting a vaccine helps more than any damage it could do," says the grieving family.
Cindy Dawkins had just turned 50 on August 1, 2021, and the Boynton Beach, Florida, resident had gone to Orlando to celebrate her birthday with her family. The next day, the restaurant worker started feeling breathless and tired, according to WPBF. "She was sleeping all day and she didn’t want to get out of bed. It got really bad when everybody came back down and she was in bed literally all day," said her 20-year-old son, Tre Burrows.
She didn't pay much heed to it, as she had bigger things to look forward to. On August 5, Dawkins, a Bahamas native, was supposed to sign the final paperwork in the process to become a U.S. citizen. But, on the very same day she was about to make her lifelong dream come true, she had to be rushed to the hospital "because her breathing was super low. She was barely getting any air," added Tre.
Two days later, on August 7, her four children, ages 12 to 24, received an early morning call, asking them to rush to the hospital, according to Good Morning America. In less than 30 minutes, she had died due to complications from COVID-19. The family has not yet received a death certificate, but they were informed that she died after contracting COVID-19 pneumonia, according to Tre. She hadn't taken the vaccination against the virus, because she had her doubts about it.
The grieving family is now speaking up, urging friends and close relatives to get the vaccination as and when they can, so their lives would be spared, unlike their mom. "I think she wasn't sure about the vaccine, and we followed the rules and kept our masks on," Tre said. "Now seeing how it happened and how quickly it happened, it definitely changed our perspective. Getting a vaccine helps more than any damage it could do."
Tre and his elder sister, 24-year-old Jenny Burrows, are now focusing on the future of their younger siblings, Zoey, 15, and Sierra, 12, now that their mom is no longer with them. "Me and my sister, we were both on the same page when it happened, the first thing that came to our mind was our two little sisters," said Tre.
"We’ve got to take care of them. We’re basically going to step up and be the parents now because they basically have no one else to lean on. My mother raised us to trust in God so all we can do is trust in him."
Jenny, a dental assistant, added, "It's just hard, to be honest. It’s hard. We’re in survival mode right now, trying to make sure that we have everything situated with the two younger siblings, getting guardianship and everything over them so we all can stay together. It’s pretty overwhelming, but the way my mom raised us, I have faith that we’ll get through everything."
"Even when we were younger, [our mom] would tell us that we were brothers and sisters and we had to look after each other," said Jenny.
The siblings fondly remember their mom as a hardworking woman who even held two jobs at one point to provide for her children. "She was an amazing woman, not just a mom," said Jenny. "She never wanted her kids to worry about anything."
At one point, the family experienced homelessness, but they received help from Janie Yoshida, a stranger at the time whose daughter attended high school with Tre. Once Yoshida learned of their struggles, she helped them out and has been in their lives since. "Cindy was the hardest working person and would have done anything and everything for her kids," said Yoshida.
"It's just devastating," she said of her friend's death. After Dawkins' death, Yoshida started a GoFundMe for the family so that she could raise funds to help the fours siblings. Overwhelmed by the love and support coming their way, the family hopes to stick together, for their mom. "We are so grateful to everybody," said Tre. "I know [our mom] is so happy that we are sticking together the way that we are and not letting a tragedy separate us."
Added Jenny, "I feel like my mom would be at peace because if I know my mom, this is all that she wanted, to make sure that her kids would be OK. That's what she was living for. She was living for us."
Cover Image Source: GoFundMe | SINGLE MOM OF 4 DIES OF COVID-19