Pray for this family:
Twenty-year-old Luis Tapiru II became one of the youngest casualties of COVID-19 in the Chicago area when he was found dead on the couch of his family’s Rogers Park condo on April 14.
His parents, Josephine and Luis Sr., already stricken with the disease, were fighting for their lives at AMITA Health St. Francis Hospital in Evanston when their son died at home alone.
Four days after her son’s death, Josephine, 56, who worked as a nurse at a nursing home, died.
It wasn’t until Thursday that Luis Sr. was informed of their deaths. Doctors waited until he was off a ventilator before telling him.
“He was in shock. He was in tears. He couldn’t believe it,” said the family’s other son, Justin Tapiru, 28, who helped deliver the news via FaceTime from Canada, where he lives.
COVID-19 has dealt a terrible blow to thousands of families around Chicago, but it has been particularly cruel to the Tapirus, a hardworking immigrant family deeply committed to their faith.
The Tapirus moved from Gatineau, Quebec, about 13 years ago. Josephine found a nursing job and thought Chicago would be a more exciting place to live. She had an uncle living here.
Natives of the Philippines, Josephine and Luis Sr. were described by their son as “really devout Christians” active in Couples for Christ, a Catholic lay movement founded in Manila. They attended St. Gertrude Catholic Church.
Luis Sr., who goes by Loy, works a manufacturing job in Wheeling and as a part-time caregiver. Josephine worked at two nursing homes at times, often putting in 12-hour days.
“My parents are like that,” Justin Tapiru said. “They loved to work all the time.”
Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them…