A loving dad who fought to overcome the CCP virus had an emotional reunion with his two young daughters. Hugging for the first time in 72 days, the family of four was reunited on March 24.
“It was very stressful being away from all my girls,” said Alfredo Hercules, 39, referring to his wife, Jamila, and daughters, Isabel, 9, and Safiah, 7.
“When you are away from home for so long,” he told Good Morning America, “you start to miss the little things you took for granted.”
Otherwise healthy, Hercules fell ill with flu-like symptoms on Jan. 3 and was admitted eight days later to Catholic Health’s Mercy Hospital in Rockville Center, New York. He was diagnosed with the CCP virus without certainty how he contracted it.
“When you have [the CCP virus] and it affects your breathing, it can be torture, but Alfredo pushed himself every single day.”
Hercules spent 72 days being transferred through several departments as his sickness progressed. But his determination to recover paid off.
On March 24, he was discharged with supplied oxygen for his continued recovery, and reunited with his daughters for the first time in two-and-a-half months.
The hospital are calling the emotional moment “Hug Day,” and staff lined the corridors to congratulate him. Mercy Hospital shared a video on Facebook in which Hercules praises his team for being “like a second family.”
“While the staff at Mercy will miss Alfredo, they were all very excited to celebrate his discharge today,” the hospital posted.
“Nurses and doctors from critical care, inpatient rehab, acute care, respiratory, emergency, and more were there to celebrate Alfredo.”
(Courtesy of Catholic Health’s Mercy Hospital)
Stein praised his patient, claiming, “He showed incredible perseverance and resilience, and I give him full credit for pushing himself to this point.”
Upon departing, the dad said he was looking forward to eating a home-cooked meal, enjoying the pleasant spring weather, and celebrating his daughters’ upcoming birthdays.