Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Coronavirus claims life of another FilAm nurse

Registered nurse Ali Guillermo died after contracting the coronavirus.

Like most immigrants coming to the United States, Ali Dennis Guillermo brought his family from the Philippines in 2004 to provide a better life for his family.

“In the Philippines, the big dream is to come to the U.S.,” his wife, Romielyn, said. “That’s how we could help our family, especially financially.”

He was among the nurses the Long Island Community Hospital  recruited from the Philippines to alleviate its nursing shortage. He found a home nearby in East Patchogue, Long Island, New York where he and his wife raised their three children, daughter Denise, 21; and sons Ali, 18 and 13-year old Aljon.

On Aril 8, Ali Guillermo died in the ICU in the same hospital where he cared for so many patients, a victim of the scourge coronavirus.

Guillermo, an intensive care unit nurse who also helped in the emergency room, fell sick with COVID-19 in mid-March. Romielyn said he had been hospitalized since March 25.

"He was someone we all looked up to. He was patient, and kind and thoughtful. He made you laugh, Just a good guy," said Darriel Daniels, one of Guillermo's co-waorkers.

MSNBC interviewed the two older Guillermo children Monday (April13) morning.

"As a nurse in the front lines -- the ICU -- we've always had that concern for him everytime he went to work," said Guillermo's 21-year old daughter Denise, an architecture student at the University of Buffalo.

"Everyone just needs someone like him," said his son Ali, 18, who is valedictorian of his high school graduating class. "He's a father, he's a friend. he's just the kind of person you want to look up. He's simply kind."

"Its been very difficult (for the family) We weren't able to go see him," said Denise. "He's not allowed to have a proper burial because these patients have to be cremated when they pass away."

Guillermo is the fifth AAPI medical professional  and third FilAm nurse -- known to Views From the Edge -- who were felled by the coronavirus. The others were Dr. Alex Hsu, who was associated with the Northwest Medical Center in Margate, Florida; Kious Kelly, Mount Sinai Hospital West in New York City; and Filipino American nurses Ariceli Llagan of the Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami and Noel Sinkiat of the Howard University Hospital.

Overall, as of last week, 27 US health professionals have died from the coronavirus.

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