Texas Family Has 18 Relatives Test Positive For COVID-19 After Birthday Party

by Cassandra Stone
Originally Published: 
18 Relatives In Texas Family Test Positive For COVID After Birthday Party

Three members of the Texas family are now hospitalized

One Texas family is facing a major health crisis after 18 members have officially tested positive for COVID-19. They believe it originated during a May 30 birthday party, where one relative who wasn’t aware they were infected spread the virus to several other family members, who also further spread it from there.

Ron Barbosa tells KHOU-11 that he’s been keeping track of the people in his family who have tested positive for COVID-19 — and that number is now at 18. Barbosa says it began with a nephew of his who had a slight cough, but didn’t think he was ill with the virus. He attended the party regardless, and even though many family members say they stayed socially distant — it wasn’t enough.

“It wasn’t that long. It was only a couple of hours,” Barbosa, who did not attend the gathering, tells the news station. “But during that brief time, somehow the other 18 family members are now infected with COVID.” Barbosa is an EMT who is also married to a physician, and says they knew the risks of gathering together and avoided attending due to safety reasons.

A total of 25 people attended, and not all of them arrived and stayed for the same duration. “When people started getting sick, we really let everyone have it,” Barbosa said. “We knew this was going to happen, I mean this whole time this has been going on we’ve been terrified.”

Family members who have been infected include two young children, two grandparents, a cancer patient and Barbosa’s parents, who are in their 80s. Three of them are currently hospitalized: Barbosa’s parents Frank and Carole, along with his sister Kathy, who is battling breast cancer.

Barbosa said it’s likely his mother infected his father after she stopped by the party to drop something off. Carole has been hospitalized since June 13, and Frank has been in the hospital since June 17. Barbosa says Frank is fighting for his life in the ICU. “My dad’s hanging on by a thread,” he says. “They’re saying this is one of the last straws for my dad.”

With COVID cases rising exponentially across the country as states have reopened, it’s even more clear that we still need to be responsible and maintain social distancing and mask-wearing.

“You know they’re in there by themselves with no family,” Barbosa said holding back tears. “It’s heartbreaking.”

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