Newport News family needs help burying coronavirus victim


NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (WAVY) –A Newport News family needs help burying their loved one, who died last week from the coronavirus. 

41-year-old Helen Davis was a proud mother of five.

“She was sweet as gold,” said Davis’ aunt Louise Webster. “She would give anything to anybody.”

Davis was known to her family simply as Bootsie.

“She cared about people,” added Davis’s daughter Monae. “She always would take care of you know matter what happens.”

Bootsie, who spent her life battling medical illnesses, found one she could not beat. She started getting flu-like symptoms two weeks ago. 

“She was coughing real bad,” Webster said. “She couldn’t hardly catch her breath. Her whole body was aching.”

When that illness wasn’t going away she went to the hospital. That’s where she tested positive for COVID-19. Doctors put her in a medically-induced coma.

“The also put her on a ventilator trying to build her lungs back up,” Webster added.

It would be the last time she would talk to her family.

“The last conversation was that she loved me and everything,” Monae said.

“She said ‘she loved me and she misses me’ and I told her she has to stay strong,” added Davis’ 13-year-old son Sincere Freeman.

On April 29, the family got a phone call saying Davis had passed.

“I couldn’t do nothing, but scream,” Webster added. “I couldn’t do nothing really. It just hurt so bad.”

“My aunt started screaming, and I just knew that she was not OK,” said daughter Regina Nixon.

“It was just like my heart fell to my stomach,” Freeman added. “It was like I couldn’t move. I couldn’t do nothing.”

She was gone in the blink of an eye.

“To everybody out there who is not taking this thing serious, you all need to take it serious, because it can take your loved one out,” said Davis’ life partner Calvin King. “You don’t want to experience what we are feeling right now.”

Family says Bootsie was not just a coronavirus statistic. She was a loved one taken far too soon.

“She took care of us,” Webster added. “She was the greatest.”

Davis didn’t have life insurance, so the family doesn’t have the money to bury her. They say they want to bury her next to her grandmother. They are started a GoFundMe page in hopes the community will help lay Bootsie to rest. 

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