Things That Matter

nurse dies from covid after filming a Heartbreaking Video For His Family

Credit: GoFundMe/Arturo and Antonio Hernandez

A coronavirus vaccine may be on it’s way, but COVID-19 is still tearing apart families and devastating communities. At this point, the emotional toll the pandemic has wreaked upon people is up there with the physical toll of the virus. Recently, a particularly tragic story out of Mexico made national headlines.

28-year-old nurse Sergio Humberto Padilla Hernandez was in the hospital, placed on a ventilator because of COVID-19. According to his friends and family, he had only 90% of his lung function.

Knowing first-hand the unpredictable nature of COVID-19, Padilla Hernandez recorded a video for his friends and family and posted it to Facebook.

Padilla Hernandez’s sister, Dolores, had already died from complications due to COVID-19 in August, so the young nurse wanted to be prepared in case the worst should happen.

“The moment of truth has arrived,” Padilla Hernandez said to the camera. “I will recover, God willing. We will move forward I will see you again, friends, family. I know you will be praying for me and my health, for my well-being. Whatever happens, you will always be looking out for my best interests, always. I love you and you are in my heart.”

Hours after filming the video, Padilla Hernandez passed away. He left behind his wife, Denise, and young son, Sergio III. His family is devastated.

Padilla Hernandez was eulogized on a GoFundMe page set up by his family.

Credit: GoFundMe/Arturo and Antonio Hernandez

“First and foremost, Sergio was a loving father to his son, Sergio III and a loving husband,” says the GoFundMe page. “Sergio lived life to the fullest. He was a devout Catholic and had a passion for helping others. Sergio was a dedicated nurse at the Municipal Hospital in Cuauhtemoc, Chihuahua, Mexico.”

The post went on to describe how Padilla Hernandez “worked tirelessly” to help others during the pandemic, which had “hit his home state of Chihuahua particularly hard.”

The GoFundMe page goes on to describe the “unimaginable hardships” Padilla Hernandez’s family is facing in the wake of his death.

“Unfortunately, his family has received very little assistance financially,” wrote Padilla Hernandez’s cousins. “Having lost their second child in the past 4 months to covid -19, our aunt and uncle are currently facing unimaginable hardships….They have put the family car up for sale and have sold nearly every possession of value leading up to Sergio’s passing.”

According to the GoFundMe page, Padilla Hernandez’s family is being crippled by lingering hospital bills from two family members having been hospitalized, funeral expenses, and general living expenses.

Padilla Hernandez’s passing is especially tragic because it illustrates how random and ruthless coronavirus is.

Despite the virus primarily being deadly to people with pre-existing conditions, once in a while, stories like this one circulate that throw our knowledge about COVID-19 into question.

This story is also tragic because, like many people who are gravely ill with COVID-19, Padilla Hernandez wasn’t able to say goodbye to his family in person. Due to the contagious nature of the virus, he was forced to say his final farewell through technology.

In the end, we hope that Padilla Hernandez’s family gets the closure and support they need from both their community and generous strangers around the world. Now is the time to come together and support one another.

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An Alleged Rapist Is Running For Governor In Mexico And Still Has The Support Of President AMLO

Things That Matter

An Alleged Rapist Is Running For Governor In Mexico And Still Has The Support Of President AMLO

Guillermo Gutierrez/NurPhoto via Getty Images

For years, Mexicans have been taking to the streets to denounce violence against women and to demand accountability from their leaders. However, much of that messaging doesn’t seem to have reached the very top as President Andres Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) continues to support a candidate for governor facing multiple allegations of sexual assault.

A candidate for governor faces multiple sexual assault allegations and still enjoys widespread support.

Félix Salgado Macedonio, a federal senator (currently on leave) is accused of sexually assaulting five women and yet is still in the running for governor of Guerrero.

Despite the accusations he faces, 64-year-old Salgado, has maintained the support of President AMLO, who has claimed that the allegations are politically motivated, and other high-ranking party officials including national party president Mario Delgado. He was considered the frontrunner in the election for governor.

AMLO came to the candidates defense, calling on people to stop politicking and avoid “media lynchings” and asserting that people should trust the party process that was used to select Salgado as candidate.

“We have to have confidence in the people, it’s the people who decide. If polls are taken and and the people say ‘I agree with this colleague [being candidate],’ I think that must be respected. Politics is a matter for everyone, not just the elites,” López Obrador said.

The MORENA party has committed to reselecting its candidate for governor but Salgado is still in the running.

Officials from the MORENA party announced that they would conduct a new selection process to find a contender for the June 6 election. The party’s honesty and justice commission said its members had voted unanimously to order a repeat of the selection process.

While the honesty and justice commission has ordered a new candidate selection process, Salgado was not precluded from participating in it. He indicated in a social media post on Friday night that he planned to seek the party’s backing for a second time.

“Cheer up colleagues! There is [still fight in the] bull,” Salgado wrote on Facebook.

Activists continue to fight back against his candidacy and the president’s support for an alleged rapist.

Women have protested in Mexico City and Guerrero state capital Chilpancingo and the hashtag #NingúnVioladorSeráGobernador (No Rapist Will be Governor) has been used countless times on Twitter.

Yolitzin Jaimes, a member of the feminist collective Las Revueltas, said the withdrawal of Salgado’s candidacy is a positive first step but urged the authorities to continue investigating the rape allegations.

“… He has to go to jail, … he mustn’t return to the Senate and he mustn’t be nominated [for governor] by any political party because … it’s very probable that he’s seeking to go to the Labor Party [a Morena ally],” she said.

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Americans Are Flocking To Mexico Amid The Pandemic And Being Terrible Tourists In The Process

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Americans Are Flocking To Mexico Amid The Pandemic And Being Terrible Tourists In The Process

ULISES RUIZ/AFP via Getty Images

Despite being one of the world’s hardest hit countries by the Covid-19 pandemic, Mexico never once closed its doors to international tourism. In fact, the country has worked hard to lure travelers from the U.S. as Americans faced increasingly tough restrictions at home. This has had a profound impact on the country’s experience with Covid-19, with so many Mexicans either falling ill themselves or knowing someone who has.

With so many Mexicans having first hand experience with the virus, it makes sense why so many have strong opinions about tourist’s behaviors while visiting the country.

Tourists are still welcomed in Mexico but their bad behavior is not.

Most Mexicans agree with their government’s open borders approach during the pandemic, since the alternative would have meant even worse economic situation for a country already suffering record levels of poverty. But the influx of tourists to the country has brought with it a level of resentment at those who fail to follow local health guidelines while on vacation.

Mexico never closed its airports to tourists and one walk down a block in Mexico City’s popular Condesa or Roma neighborhoods and you’ll spot American tourists within minutes – many failing to wear a mask. The problem is even more severe in popular tourist destinations like Oaxaca.

There, tourists often travel from the bustling city of Oaxaca into remote villages where Indigenous residents have even less access to proper medical care.

Residents fear that tourists feel they are exempt from local Covid-19 guidelines.

Many residents who have had their own personal experience with the coronavirus has made them sensitive to the pandemic situation in their community. As case numbers continued to rise, many noticed more tourists defying widely practiced public-health protocols, like wearing face masks in public.

On Feb. 25, a popular photographer from Oaxaca, Frank Coronado, posted a plea to his 171,000 Instagram followers: “Dear travelers, you are welcome in Oaxaca, but you should ALWAYS wear a mask when you are in public places.”

He wanted to publicly address the issue and encourage visitors to do better — particularly foreigners who travel from Oaxaca City into smaller rural villages, where artisans are even more vulnerable. He told the Washington Post, “I get mad because I already went through [covid-19] and know how bad it feels. I don’t want my people, the people of Oaxaca, to get sick.”

With an economy based on services, many don’t have the freedom to work from home.

Many in Mexico don’t have the luxury of isolating from tourists — such as Aurora Tostado, who owns the downtown coffee shop Marito & Moglie with her husband.

“People in Mexico, we have to get out of our homes to work. It’s not like we can work remotely like most of the people in the U.S.,” Tostado told the Washington Post. Like others in hospitality, Tostado benefits financially from having tourists, and she is happy to welcome them back, she says. She just hopes they will consider the chain reaction of their behavior as they enjoy the culture that makes her city special

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