Vallejo, 89, and his middle son, Carlos, 57 were both doctors, and both, unfortunately, contracted the coronavirus. Jorge was a retired obstetrician and gynecologist while his son Carlos was an internist.
Both doctors were admitted to hospital at the same time, day and, while Jorge passed away a few days later on June 27, Carlos spent 42 days in the intensive care unit before his death on August 1.
The Vallejos family is originally from Guantánamo, Cuba, and moved to the United States in 1965. Jorge spent a decade learning English before becoming certified as an obstetrician-gynecologist in the US and worked up until his wife’s death in 2005.
Before his death, Carlos’s family said that 57-year-old internist was caring for as many as 76 coronavirus patients, many of whom were in nursing homes, before falling sick himself.
The Miami Herald reported that Jorge and Carlos’ relatives said that five other family members, including Carlos’ wife, had contracted the virus as well.
Carlos’ children have paid tribute to their late father and called him a ‘hero’.
“I didn’t even want him to go to the nursing home and the hospitals because I was terrified. He wanted to be loyal. It was like he was available for them 24/7. He really was the true definition of a hero. I knew that when COVID started, that he was going to be a hero,” her daughter, Giselle said.
“He was just my role model. I could talk to him every day for hours. He was such a giving doctor that if his patients were going through a hard time… he would see them for free and tell them not to worry about it,” his youngest son, Kevin, added.
Jessica Vallejo, Jorge’s granddaughter and a niece of Carlos, is a news reporter. She said their deaths have been very difficult with her having to frequently report on coronavirus-related topics.
“We just lost basically both of our anchors of our whole entire family. In my eyes, [my grandfather] was the American Dream.”