28-Year-Old Nurse Dies from COVID-19 Complications Hours After Filming Goodbye Video from Hospital Bed

"I love you, and you are in my heart," Sergio Humberto Padilla Hernandez said in the 58-second video, translated from Spanish

Sergio Humberto Padilla Hernandez
Sergio Humberto Padilla Hernandez. Photo: gofundme

A 28-year-old nurse in Mexico said his final goodbyes in a heartbreaking video to his family shortly before dying from coronavirus complications.

Sergio Humberto Padilla Hernandez, who worked at Hospital Angeles Cuauhtémoc, died on Nov. 6, hours after he was placed on a ventilator due to severe symptoms related to COVID-19, according to his family.

In a GoFundMe campaign set up in support of his family, Padilla Hernandez's cousins said that the frontline worker recorded his final farewell because he had already lost his 30-year-old sister Dolores to coronavirus in August and "fearing the worst, Sergio decided to post a heartbreaking good-bye video on Facebook for his loved ones."

"The moment of truth has arrived," Padilla Hernandez said in the 58-second video, translated from Spanish. "Whatever happens, you will always be looking out for my best interests, always. I love you, and you are in my heart."

According to his cousin, Padilla Hernandez had lost 90 percent of his lung function when he filmed the video.

"First and foremost, Sergio was a loving father to his son, Sergio III and a loving husband. Sergio lived life to the fullest. He was a devout catholic and had a passion for helping others," Arturo Hernandez wrote on his GoFundMe page. "Sergio worked tirelessly, dedicating his life to helping those affected by the virus, amid this pandemic which has hit his home state of Chihuahua particularly hard."

Padilla Hernandez's family told CNN that he initially took a break from work to care for his mother and twin sisters, who fell ill with the coronavirus in July, but went back to the hospital in September after one of his siblings died from COVID-19 complications.

"He went back to work and he was continuing on the front lines of helping people with Covid at the hospital where his sister had passed and his mom had been sick, he then contracted Covid himself," Adalberto Hernandez said.

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The nurse tested positive for the novel virus on Oct. 22 and was hospitalized two weeks later, according to his family.

"The sad part was that the doctors felt ... very confident with his chances because he didn't have prior health conditions, he was young, healthy," Adalberto told the outlet.

"Now he's gone, his sister is gone," he added. "There's one less good person to help people in need because that's what he was about."

The family said on Padilla Hernandez's GoFundMe page that his parents, who own a small furniture shop in Cuauhtémoc, are now "facing unimaginable hardships" and struggling to pay for hospital bills and funeral expenses after losing two children in the ongoing pandemic.

"Unfortunately, his family has received very little assistance financially," Padilla Hernandez's cousin Arturo wrote. "They have put the family car up for sale and have sold nearly every possession of value leading up to Sergio's passing."

In an update, Padilla Hernandez's family said that they wanted to share his story to "bring attention to this horrible disease that has ravaged communities indiscriminately throughout the world."

"Our hope is that our family's story can serve as a reminder that this virus is very real and all precautions should be taken to help protect yourselves, your loved ones and those in your communities."

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments. PEOPLE has partnered with GoFundMe to raise money for the COVID-19 Relief Fund, a GoFundMe.org fundraiser to support everything from frontline responders to families in need, as well as organizations helping communities. For more information or to donate, click here.

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