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Mom dies of COVID days after giving birth, Georgia family says. She never met her son

Marrisha Jenkins

Marrisha Jenkins

Screengrab from Facebook

A 27-year-old Georgia woman was getting ready to finally hold her newborn son when her family said she began struggling to breathe and collapsed on the bathroom floor.

Marrisha Jenkins, who tested positive for COVID-19 during her pregnancy, had just gotten cleared to visit her premature baby after spending two weeks in quarantine, her family told Atlanta-area news outlets this week.

But Jenkins never got a chance to meet her son.

Her husband said he heard a thud and called 911, WAGA reported.

Her husband “was doing CPR before they got there and she coded in the ambulance and when they got her to the hospital, she coded again,” the woman’s mother, Helena Kindred, told WSB-TV. “At that time, with no oxygen to the brain, it caused severe damage.”

Jenkins died of coronavirus-related complications on Thursday, leaving behind her newborn, 5-year-old and 6-year-old, according to a GoFundMe page that says it’s raising money in her honor. She is remembered as a loving member of a close family.

“You just felt happy every time you got around her,” her husband said, according to WSB-TV.

Family members told the TV station Jenkins planned to get a coronavirus vaccine after giving birth. Now, her loved ones are urging pregnant women to get vaccinated to prevent a similar loss.

“At least do your research,” her husband told WAGA. “Yes my son is okay but I sure would like to have my wife with me.”

Last month, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in updated guidance for pregnant women recommended anyone expecting a baby to get a COVID-19 shot. Health officials say the benefits of being vaccinated outweigh possible risks.

Jenkins lived in Avondale Estates, roughly 10 miles east of Atlanta. As of Sunday, all Georgia counties had either “high” or “substantial” community transmission of COVID-19, meaning residents are urged to wear face masks inside public places to help slow the spread of the disease, McClatchy News reported.

Simone Jasper is a reporter covering breaking stories for The News & Observer and real-time news in the Carolinas.

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