SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) -While the number of positive COVID-19 cases are rising so are the tests coming back negative.
But the statistics released daily by the Florida Department of Health aren’t just numbers.
They’re people... with families... with hopes… some fighting for their lives.
One Suncoast strong member of our community beat the odds at 76 and is finally home after a long battle against COVID-19.
"Sounds to me like it was a miraculous recovery," said North Port resident Dolores Roberts.
Strong and a fighter...just like Rocky.... those are some of the words Roberts, commonly known as Dee is described as.
"I'm here and I'm just proud to be here. I fought hard. I did fight hard," said Roberts.
Mrs. Dee was in the intensive care unit for 45 days at Sarasota Memorial Health... 42 of which, she was intubated and on a ventilator. She doesn’t remember much but her family was right there with her the entire time, virtually.
“They would suit up and allow us to do Facetime talks to help encourage my mom. I really do credit the positive energy and being able to stay connected with helping her pull through,” said Dee’s son, Bill Roberts.
Dee wasn’t doing well and medical professionals attempted clinical trials including convalescent plasma. Her children say within three days of the treatment you could see some improvement followed by three negative COVID test results.
“It’s like when the Phillies won the World Series. Because we were so excited to finally, it was finally some positive-- well negative, but some good news was coming out,” said Dee’s daughter Linda Churinskas.
Dee then went to the Rehabilitation Pavilion at SMH for nearly two weeks.
" The hardest thing I had to deal with was being alone. Cause I couldn’t see anybody but... that’s changed now. I’m home,"said Roberts.
A sweet and long awaited homecoming as her five children came into town from Philadelphia and New Jersey... and her neighbors welcomed her back with open arms on Thursday.
She “Dee-feated” COVID-19.
Her family wants to thank all the medical professionals who took a part in Dee’s recovery.
As for Dee she says a big lesson she takes with her after surviving COVID-19 is that you can’t take anything for granted.