According to the report, the high school sweethearts, identified as Sylvia and Alvaro Fernandez, died on December 19, days after testing positive for the virus.
“My brother and my sister-in-law, they were very close,” Salvador Fernandez, Alvaro’s brother, told NBC Los Angeles. “They were high school sweethearts. They’ve been together since she was 15. One couldn’t live without the other.”
Family members confirmed that the couple was unvaccinated, adding that Alvaro, who had, “wanted to wait and do more research,” according to the outlet.
“He Googled information. He didn’t want to believe everything that was on the news,” Alvaro’s sister told NBC Los Angeles. “This is kind of an eye-opener for everybody in my family that whoever is not vaccinated definitely should have their vaccinations.”
Their death comes amid the spread of Omicron in California — where the first case of the highly contagious variant was detected in the US. Earlier this week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that the new variant accounts for 59% of cases in the country. According to the California Department of Public Health, there have been more than five million cases and nearly 76,000 deaths from COVID-19.
According to a GoFundMe created by the family, the couple is survived by their four children.
“This will be a loss felt for a very long time,” the fundraiser said. “To be left without their parents, and to have to carry the weight of being pushed into adulthood while their still children themselves. ”