CHESTER COUNTY, Pa. (CBS) — Home for the holidays has special meaning for a Chester County family that has been hard hit by COVID-19. A young mom who was hospitalized for months with serious complications from the coronavirus is home just in time to celebrate Thanksgiving with her family.
The journey home starts with leaving the wheelchair behind as Marissa Fuentes gets a hero’s send-off from Bryn Mawr Rehab.
“There were days that it was really a struggle to get up,” Fuentes said, “but giving up was never an option. I was determined to get home to my babies and my husband.”
Fuentes was hospitalized in April with a nearly fatal COVID-19 infection and she was seven months pregnant. The baby was safely delivered via emergency cesarean section. He was 5 months old before they were reunited in the hospital, with mom still battling the effects of the virus.
“It was very tough,” Fuentes said. “I felt very weak and tired.”
Eyewitness News first met Fuentes and her husband, Adrian, in October when she was released from Lankenau Hospital. Now after a month in rehab, another round of emotional goodbyes and thank yous, Fuentes is finally back home after seven months, reunited with her family.
Today, Bryn Mawr Rehab celebrated Marissa’s discharge home with her family, just in time for Thanksgiving. We are thankful for the teamwork across Main Line Health that supported Marissa’s recovery journey. Watch her COVID recovery story on CBS 3. pic.twitter.com/4per3iTCBu
— Main Line Health (@mainlinehealth) November 24, 2021
“I was determined to get home before the holidays, to be able to be with them,” Fuentes said, “so it definitely feels incredible to be able to be home and spend Thanksgiving with my family.”
They’re planning a traditional meal with an extra helping of gratitude.
“The fact that she made it home the day before Thanksgiving, it’s nothing short of a miracle,” Adrian Fuentes said.
“I am thankful for all the doctors and the nurses that saved my life, my incredible husband, family, my children and God for giving me this opportunity to be here still and to be able to tell my story,” Marissa Fuentes said.
Fuentes’s story also includes an urgent message about the importance of vaccinations. She wishes she had gotten one back in April, but distribution was still limited and little was known about the dangers of COVID-19 to pregnant women.