OAKLAND, Calif. (KRON) – Valerie Louie worked as a nurse in Oakland until she fell ill with COVID-19 and could no longer work.
The single mother was left home alone, trying to bring down her fever and recover on her own.
Louie, 60, has spent two decades working as a hospital nurse, most recently caring for patients on life support.
She has dedicated her life to helping people.
But she also volunteered at Rocket Dog Rescue Center, where she has helped thousands of animals find forever homes.
She was committed to helping others, her friends and family told KRON4.
Sadly, no one was able to help Louie once she was infected with COVID-19 in November.
Louie was feeling sicker and sicker as she spent a week in isolation at home.
Her friend Tammy decided to call 911 and take Louie to the hospital, where she was immediately put on a ventilator.
His friends told KRON4 as they didn’t know when to call an ambulance and they wished they had called sooner.
Louie was fortunate enough to speak to his 21-year-old son Andrew shortly before his death.
Louie’s death is the tragic result of what can happen during a wave that is currently occurring in the San Francisco Bay Area. Nurses say they feel exhausted working long shifts in intensive care units as more COVID patients arrive in need of urgent care.
Rocket Dog Rescue founder Pali Boucher said Louie was a “silent hero,” who never sought to be recognized despite all the animals she saved for love.
Boucher told KRON4: “There are a lot of generous people in this world. And go out and volunteer. But there is no one like Valérie. She literally had the heart of a hero. But a quiet hero. She really made the world a sweeter place.
“She had a real soft spot for the underdog,” said Boucher.
Boucher said the death of her close friend had struck very close to her home amid this global COVID pandemic.
“We hear all this on the news. We are all very clearly aware of the high numbers. But how does this affect us on a personal level? And now we see him getting closer and closer to the people we love. The numbers have names, faces and hearts attached to them, ”she said.
Boucher said: “One of these numbers is my friend.”
|Saint Clare||Case: 57 452||Deaths: 607|
|San Mateo||Cases: 21 160||Deaths: 198|
|San Francisco||Case: 20,708||Deaths: 176|
|Contra Costa||Case: 35 322||Deaths: 298|
|Alameda||Case: 43 736||Deaths: 588|
|Marine||Case: 6,778||Deaths: 108|
|Solano||Case: 15,008||Deaths: 93|
|Sonoma||Case: 16,706||Deaths: 174|
|Napa||Case: 4,809||Deaths: 24|
|Total||Case: 221 679||Deaths: 2,266|