Saturday, September 11, 2021 1:53 PM EST
By DANIEL PATRICK SHEEHAN, The (Allentown) Morning Call, AP
BETHLEHEM, Pa. — Sick with COVID-19 in a hospital bed, pregnant with her third child and anticipating the worst, Jackie Gonzalez penned a letter to her oldest son. “My dearest Jacob,” it began. “I thought we would have forever together. But forever isn’t as long as I hoped ... ” Not long after writing the letter, she was placed on a ventilator and died the day after an emergency Caesarean section to deliver the baby, Justin. He was two months premature. Her older sister, whose grief over the loss remains raw nine months later, adopted Gonzalez’s three sons, all of whom have special needs.