Oklahoma man battling COVID-19 texts his mom ‘thank you for everything’ before going into coma


OKLAHOMA CITY (NewsNation Now) —  A 28-year-old Oklahoma man remains in a coma in an Oklahoma City ICU after the rest of his family recovered from coronavirus.

“In 28 years, this is the longest I haven’t seen my son,” his mother, Kathy Prater said. “And he was so scared to be there because no one can be there with him.”

Daniel Welch, 28, has been in a medically induced coma for weeks.

“No parent should have to go through this,” Prater said.

Daniel’s mother, Kathy, says she was sick first about a month ago. Within day, her two sons also tested positive for COVID-19.

Prater said she first got COVID-19 about a month ago. Within days, her two sons also tested positive.

Prater and her youngest son, 25-year-old Zach, were able to recover at home. But Welch wasn’t so lucky.

“As I got better, my oldest got worse,” Prater said.

His oxygen levels dropped fast, so his family rushed him to the ER.

At first, Welch was alert enough to have his phone, texting his mom “I love you” and “Thank you for everything.”

“Before they did his chest tube, he held up his hands in a heart for us,” Prater said.

Then, the texts and the calls stopped.

The next time, Prater’s phone rang, it was the doctor.

“She says he took a turn for the worst and we are intubating him,” Prater said. “And if I don’t get him an ECMO bed, he will not survive.”

Welch was moved to INTEGRIS Baptist in Oklahoma City where he continues to fight.

“I want to go and I want to hold his hand and tell him I love him, and you can’t do any of that,” Prater said. “You never know if you get that second chance.”

Daniel, who is diabetic, was also diagnosed with pneumothorax, which means a hole develops in the lung that allows air to escape.

Welch doesn’t have any insurance, so the family set up a GoFundMe account where donations can be made.

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