A film director in China and some of his family members passed away from the 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV, also known by its official name COVID-19).
Chang Kai, who was 55 years old when he died at a hospital on Feb. 14, was an external communications officer at a Hubei Film Studio subsidiary, according to Variety.
Chang was the third person in his family to succumb to the virus, which is believed to have originated from a wet market in Wuhan, a city in the Hubei province, China.
His father passed away from the virus on the first day of the Lunar New Year on Jan. 25 followed by his mother.
“My father had a fever, cough and trouble breathing. [We] tried to send him to the hospital but none of the hospitals we visited took him, because they had no more beds,” he said in his last words.
They were cared for by Chang and his sister, who also became infected by COVID-19 and passed away hours later after the director.
After bringing his father home, the virus spread to his other family members and Chang passed away days later. In his note, the director said he and his wife were denied treatment opportunities early on. His wife, who is still alive, remains in the hospital’s intensive care unit battling the infection.
The director took up photography in Wuhan University’s journalism school in 1989 and joined Hubei Film Studio after graduating.
His colleagues in the movie industry praised him for his contributions. The well-respected director’s death was a painful loss for them.
“Farewell to those I love and to those who loved me!” the director said before passing away.
The Chinese government has already built new hospitals to accommodate those who have been infected, but the number of sick people is rapidly growing. Exhibition centers have been converted into makeshift medical centers.
The number of infections has now climbed to 75,217 with 2,012 recorded deaths. The number of patients who have recovered also increased to 14,739, according to the latest update on Worldometers.