It is the call you never want to get…something horribly tragic has happened that affects your entire family and community, altering your very foundation. On Monday, June 22, 2020 Akash Patel in East Brunswick, NJ got that call. His wife, father, and 8-year-old daughter had died in a drowning accident.
Life has been difficult during the Coronavirus epidemic for all people around the world. But Akash and his family had the good fortune of looking forward to moving into their new home in late spring. New house, nice neighbors, and a supportive community were proving to be a welcomed escape from the global pandemic. Their new house should have been a haven from the stress of the world and a place to stay safe from the virus.
Only weeks living in their new home, on June 22nd, the most heartbreaking and unimaginable thing happened. On a very hot June afternoon, Akash’s wife and father tried saving his 8-year-old daughter from drowning in their pool. In doing so, they gave their lives trying to save the little girl. All three perished.
Many of us have spoken these last, few days about loss and missing our loved ones. There is nothing as gut wrenching as the loss of a child, though. It is a disruption of the natural order of life. Compound that enormous hole in your heart with losing your spouse and parent on the same afternoon. It is inconceivable.
Not being able to mourn with others makes it so much harder. Folks have been experiencing this from the start of the Coronavirus epidemic. While people need to respect social distancing, they also want to show support. How can you help when you cannot offer a hug, bring over meals, or even drop off a card sharing words of support?
After a discussion among friends, we have created this GoFundMe page on behalf of Akash to hopefully help share some of his financial burden. We are hoping to gather enough funds to help offset the cost of the funeral(s) Akash will have to endure in the coming week. We ask that people open their hearts, and please donate what you feel you can afford. If money is not an option, as with so many these days, please say a prayer, kind words, whatever good will you can extend. It is very much appreciated.
And, please, tell your family and friends how much you love them. And remind each other that you are cherished and appreciated. Life is short, sometimes much shorter than planned. Be kind to one another.
- Denise Benoit
- Chirag Batki
Organizer and beneficiary
East Brunswick, NJ