A 22-year-old Chicago mother has lost her battle to COVID-19 after spending three weeks on a ventilator and struggling to breathe.
Nyla Moore, who suffered from an asthma attack around April 10 and later tested positive for the coronavirus, died at Rush University Medical Center on May 1, according to her family.
“I screamed so loud. I just lost it ... it hasn’t been the same since ... I haven’t watched TV ... it’s just been so sad all around,” her mother, Nikki Collins-Moore told ABC News.
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Collins-Moore said that her daughter was on a ventilator and sedated for 22 days before she died. She said that her final words to her child were on a cell phone when she was sharing some encouragement with her.
“I love you Nyla. Get well, we got the baby. You got this,” Nyla’s mother recalls telling her daughter.
Her mother said that prior to contracting COVID-19, Nyla didn’t have any previous health issues or common virus symptoms, but rather believed that her asthma was flaring up and causing her difficulty breathing.
Nyla, who was the youngest out of six children, leaves behind a two-year-old son, Eric. Collins-Moore, who has a dozen grandchildren, says that she and Nyla’s father will assist the infant’s dad in taking care of young Eric.
“Her baby, he’s too young to know but I know he feels it. His spunk has left a little bit,” Collins-Moore said.
Nyla, the daughter of two Chicago city workers, was a stay-at-home mother who dreamed of becoming a teacher. Amidst the pandemic, she often babysat for family members who are essential workers.
“Nyla was our fun girl. She was the baby of six … she loved music and she had a knack for people. She loved people,” Collins-Moore said.
Prior to graduating high school in 2016, Nyla’s mother said that her daughter not only excelled academically, but that she was also multi-talented as well. She participated in various activities such as the debate team, cheerleading and the band. Additionally, she enjoyed working with students with special needs.
Her maternal grandmother, Debra Baker, is a 63-year-old veteran medical worker who has been working on the frontlines in Chicago as an Operating Room Technician at St. Bernard Hospital. Baker has been helping patients in the medical field for over two decades, including previously working at the same hospital where Nyla passed away.
Across the nation, COVID-19 has claimed the lives of tens of thousands with African Americans, who are dying at a much higher rate than other racial demographics, according to several states’ data analysis.
In Chicago, that also rings true with staggering statistics showing that 72% of coronavirus deaths were black patients despite the city’s population only being 32% black.
Now, as dozens of states across the country begin to slowly reopen, Nyla’s friend of over seven years, Mariah Starks, is sounding the alarm for anyone, particularly young people, who are not taking the health guidelines seriously.
“My best friend used to be in the house everyday all day and still caught it. Age doesn't mean nothing ... it’s nothing to play with because this is a different type of hurt man,” Starks wrote on Facebook.
"I keep trying not to be mad at the world but I cannot help it .. .my heart is broken," Starks said.
A viewing for family and friends is scheduled for Nyla on Friday followed by a service on Saturday, where she will be her favorite color: yellow.