Teen's tragic last words to mum as Covid 'ate through her body'

Nadine Carroll
·2-min read

A family is mourning the loss of 18-year-old Sarah Simental just three days after she was hospitalised with Covid-19.

The last time Deborah Simental was able to talk with her daughter was over the phone.

Due to coronavirus restrictions Deborah wasn’t allowed to visit her daughter in hospital and she remembers Sarah being concerned about missing the holidays.

“I said, ‘It is going to be okay’, and she knew she was going to miss Christmas – she loved Christmas,” Deborah told NBC.

“The last words she said to me is, ‘Mum, it is going to be okay.’”

Sarah Simental is pictured left and right with a dog. She died on December 26 after being diagnosed with coronavirus.
Sarah Simental (pictured), 18, died after testing positive for Covid-19. Her mum said she was worried she would miss Christmas. Source: ABC7

Deborah had rushed her daughter to hospital on December 23.

Sarah tested positive for coronavirus five days earlier, but it wasn’t until she complained of pain in her left shoulder that Deborah took her daughter to the emergency room.

The 18-year-old’s oxygen levels dropped and she was placed in the intensive care unit where she was only able to connect with her parents over the phone.

‘It literally just ate her through’

The next time Deborah could be with her daughter, she had been airlifted to the University of Chicago Medical Centre where she was was sedated.

“I just can’t believe how fast that it progressed,” her father, Don, told ABC7.

“It literally just ate her through,” Sarah’s mother added.

“She went into cardiac arrest, she had a brain bleed, it was deteriorating her kidneys and no parents should ever have to watch their child go through that.”

Deborah Simental (left) and her daughter, Sarah Simental (right).
Deborah Simental's (left) daughter Sarah (right) had recently turned 18 and was about to graduate from high school. Source: ABC7

Her parents insisted Sarah was a healthy teenager with no other medical conditions before she tested positive to Covid-19.

“No underlying conditions at all. She was a very healthy, 18-year-old young lady. We were proactive with health, we had all gotten flu shots and knew the importance because I stressed it all the time when it comes to social distancing and making sure we had masks,” Deborah told NBC Chicago.

Sarah died on December 26 of acute hypoxic respiratory failure due to coronavirus, according to the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office.

Sarah’s parents were able to be by their daughter’s side as she passed away.

The teenager was months away from graduating high school with dreams of working with animals.

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