A Portuguese descendant who lives in Wales, Francis Gonçalves, says that his brother and parents died in Portugal, after refusing to take the vaccine against the covid-19, influenced by the movements anti-vaccines.

The story is being reprinted in several international newspapers and motivating a lively exchange of messages between advocates and supporters of covid-19 vaccination.

On August 7, Francis Gonçalves used the social network Facebook to announce that the newspaper Wales Online contacted him to write an article about what had happened to his family.

In the news, published this Tuesday by the newspaper, Francis Gonçalves, who lives in Cardiff, said that his brother Shaul, 40, father Basil, 73, and mother Charmagne, 65, began to feel barely on the weekend of July 10, a few days after they shared a meal. Two weeks after these symptoms, all three were dead.

In an interview with the online newspaper, Francis said that his family, who was in Portugal, did not receive vaccines against the new coronavirus because they had been frightened by the “disinformation” anti-vaccination.

The Portuguese descendant said that his father went to the hospital on July 6, due to a kidney stone problem, and that he believes he became infected in the institution.

Two days later, a Thursday, the father and mother had dinner with their brother, in the apartment he shared with his girlfriend.

Right over the weekend they felt bad. Shaul felt heavy and extremely tired and his parents were hospitalized, having tested positive for covid-19.

Away from his family and facing the worsening state of health of his brother and parents, Francis decided to travel to Portugal. However, on July 14 he learned that his father had been transferred to the intensive care unit (ICU).

The health of the hospitalized parents got worse and that of the brother also got worse.

While waiting for the results of the covid-19 test to travel to Portugal, Francis learned that his brother was hospitalized urgently on 17 July. The following morning, he was informed that Shaul had died, as he told the Wales Online.

On July 20, Francis was informed by the hospital that his father had died, and the same news was received about his mother on July 24th.

A week later, on August 1st, the three family members were buried in the Alto de São João cemetery, in Lisbon.

Francis intends to move the bodies of his parents to another location – and not the plot where those infected with covid-19 are buried – but he knows that, for now, this is not possible.

Shaken by these deaths, the Portuguese descendant is very angry, as he believes that the vaccine against covid-19 could have led to another outcome, at least for the brother who “I was the healthiest person” who knew.

So expect sharing your experience, though “extremely hard”, help to encourage others to get vaccinated, especially those like your family who are afraid of vaccines.

“They got caught in the middle of a lot of anti-vaccination propaganda going around”, told the Wales Online.

Originally from South Africa, Francis Gonçalves’ family moved to Cardiff in 2015 and, a year later, his parents and brother moved to Portugal, where his father was originally from.

Covid-19 has caused at least 4,303,610 deaths worldwide, among more than 203.3 million infections by the new coronavirus registered since the beginning of the pandemic, according to the most recent report by the Agence France-Presse.

In Portugal, since March 2020, 17,502 people have died and 990,293 cases of infection have been registered, according to the Directorate-General for Health.

The respiratory disease is caused by the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, detected in late 2019 in Wuhan, a city in central China, and currently with variants identified in countries such as the United Kingdom, India, South Africa, Brazil or Peru.

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