Mom Gives Birth To Son But Dies From COVID Before She Can Hold Him

by Julie Scagell
CBS Los Angeles/Getty

She also leaves behind a one-year-old daughter

Erika Becerra was eight months pregnant when she found out she was positive for COVID-19. In November, she gave birth to a healthy baby boy, Diego, and was immediately intubated because she was having trouble breathing. Three weeks later, Becerra died, never having held her son.

Becerra was hospitalized briefly in November after having early contractions but when she was released, she had difficulty breathing and moving around, so she was sent back to the hospital to be induced. “She had a normal labor, she gave birth to her son but didn’t get to hold him because right after she gave birth, that’s when they put in the tube and then from there she just started declining,” her brother, Michael Avilez, told CNN.

Becerra, who also has a one-year-old daughter, recently moved from LA to Detroit, Michigan, with her husband. Currently, there are over 15 million positive cases of coronavirus in the US and almost 285,000 people have died, according to information from Johns Hopkins University. The country continues to set record highs both in cases and in number of daily deaths.

According to Avilez, Becerra wasn’t worried about being pregnant during the pandemic and was particularly cautious if she did have to go out in public, making sure she wore a mask and sanitized any surfaces she touched. “She followed every rule in the book and she still ended up catching it and it’s sad,” Avilez said. “You got a lot of people who don’t understand what’s going on … they all think it’s a joke until it happens to them or one of their family members.”

He continued: “Towards the last moments, she was tearing up,” Avilez said. “I know she heard us as we prayed for her, we talked to her, we comforted her in the last moments.” According to the family, the new mom didn’t have any underlying health conditions other than her pregnancy. “All my sister wanted was the best for everybody and she cared about lives. She didn’t deserve to go through what she went through.”

The family set up a GoFundMe to help with funeral and travel expenses for the family. “Erika was a very caring individual. Never biased, never critical, always accepting and joyful,” the site reads. “Let’s make Erika proud and raise awareness! We ask your help to give this family peace of mind during these difficult times and around the holiday season.” They have already raised over $62,000 for the family.

“Erica was the most wonderful person you could ever meet,” Avilez continued. “For her, other people’s happiness was her happiness.”

Information about COVID-19 is rapidly changing, and Scary Mommy is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. With news being updated so frequently, some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For this reason, we are encouraging readers to use online resources from local public health departments, the Centers for Disease Control, and the World Health Organization to remain as informed as possible.