18 Family Members Test Positive for Coronavirus After Surprise Birthday Party

A surprise birthday party has led to a health crisis for one Texas family.

Ron Barbosa, a volunteer EMT who is married to a doctor, says 18 members of his family have tested positive for coronavirus after attending a surprise 30th birthday party for his daughter-in-law on May 30.

While neither Barbosa nor his wife attended the gathering, seven of their relatives did and after contracting the novel virus spread it to 11 other family members.

“When people started getting sick, we really let everyone have it,” Barbosa told WFAA. “We knew this was going to happen, I mean this whole time this has been going on we’ve been terrified.”

Barbosa’s nephew hosted the party and was unknowingly infected with the virus, thinking his cough was due to his construction job.

While the family tried to social distance at the party, it apparently wasn’t enough to stop transmission.

“It wasn’t that long,” Barbosa said. “It was only a couple of hours. But during that brief time, somehow the other 18 family members are now infected with COVID.”

Infected family members include two young children, Barbosa’s parents, Frank and Carole, who are both in their ‘80s, and his sister Kathy, who is battling breast cancer, the outlet reported.

While his parents and his sister were all hospitalized, Kathy is said to be doing better and recovering while also undergoing chemo treatments.

Carole has been hospitalized since June 13th, while Frank, who was hospitalized a few days later on June 17th, is currently in the ICU on life support.

“My dad’s hanging on by a thread,” Barbosa said. “They’re saying this is one of the last straws for my dad.”

While most of Barbosa’s other family members are recovering from the virus, everyone was upset to learn they passed it to their loved ones.

"We were horrified. People couldn't believe that they took it to a family member," Barbosa said. "But now, we're holding on together."

On Thursday, Texas reported a record 5,996 new cases of COVID-19 and 47 new deaths.

In addition, Governor Greg Abbott announced Texas would pause further reopening phases as a response to the recent spike in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations.

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