Rushia Johnson Stephens, a former DeKalb County music teacher, started feeling sick around March 2 but was sent home from the hospital, news station WAGA reported.
But over the next few weeks, her health continued to worsen and she collapsed Thursday at her home, the outlet reported.
“My brother-in-law called me, her husband, and said, ‘Hey we are going to rush her to the hospital because she just passed out,’” her brother Kenyatta Johnson told the outlet. “And I was like, ‘Oh my goodness.’”
He said that he was relieved his sister might finally receive the treatment she needed — but two hours later he received another, heartbreaking call.
“I received a call from her daughter saying, ‘My momma is dead,’ and it blew us away,” Johnson told the outlet.
He said that her autopsy confirmed that she had indeed contracted COVID-19.
“This thing is real. It has hit home. I lost my sister. This is a pain that is so hard for me right now,” Johnson said.
Georgia has reported six fatalities from the virus as the country’s death toll climbs to more than 800, according to a tally from Johns Hopkins University.