Unvaccinated Spouses Die Hours Apart After Being Hospitalized for COVID, Leaving 7 Kids Behind

"I'm like stressing to everybody in my family, [they have to] be vaccinated because I can't do this again," one family member said

Couple of 22 Years Die of COVID Hours Apart
Troy and Charletta Green. Photo: Go Fund Me

A Detroit couple died within hours of each other earlier this week after contracting COVID-19.

Their health issues began in mid-August, when Troy Green, 44, felt too unwell to go on a family trip to Florida, according to Fox 2 News. Two days after arriving in Florida, his wife Charletta, also 44, was hospitalized with COVID-19 — and Troy was hospitalized back home the following day.

Troy's sister, Tiki Green, told the outlet that the pair were unvaccinated, but had been considering getting the shot before they fell ill.

While Troy's health eventually seemed to improve, things took a turn after he learned of his wife's worsening condition.

"Her lungs were severely damaged and ... they just couldn't do any more for her," Green told Fox 2 News. "When he realized that his wife, you know, maybe [was] not getting better, after he hears she's on a ventilator and she's on it 100 percent constantly, he just basically couldn't take that. He just started having chest pains and eventually a couple of hours later he passed."

Troy died from a heart attack on Tuesday, hours after his wife died in Florida.

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The pair, childhood sweethearts who had been married for 22 years, leave behind seven children, the youngest of whom is 10 years old.

"We're just telling them that we are here, we love them and we're going to support them as much as we can," Green told Fox 2 News.

A GoFundMe created to help cover funeral expenses has raised over $5,000 as of Friday.

Following the death of her brother and sister-in-law, Green said she is encouraging "everybody" in her family to get vaccinated.

"I'm like stressing to everybody in my family, [they have to] be vaccinated because I can't do this again," she told Fox 2 News. "Covid is taking too many people."

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 the 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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