An unvaccinated mother of three has died of COVID-19 complications after giving birth prematurely, leaving behind her devastated mother and husband who are now urging other pregnant women to get the shot.
Marrisha ‘ReRe’ Kindred Jenkins, 27, from Atlanta, Georgia, was 33 weeks pregnant when she was diagnosed with COVID-19 and pneumonia on September 4, over a month before she was due to give birth.
Three days later, the expectant mom and her husband Myles welcomed their baby boy, Jaylen, who was born healthy but seven weeks premature, WSB-TV reported.
Tragic loss: Marrisha ‘ReRe’ Kindred Jenkins, 27, from Atlanta, Georgia, gave birth to her son prematurely before she died of COVID-19 complications on September 23
Healthy baby: Marrisha and her husband Myles welcomed their newborn son, Jaylen, on September 7, just three days after she was diagnosed with COVID-19 and pneumonia
Marrisha was still infected when she gave birth, and the newborn was immediately put into quarantine. She never got to hold her son before she died.
She and Myles were preparing to see their baby boy for the first time on September 19 when she stopped breathing.
‘Myles was doing CPR before they got there and she coded in the ambulance and when they got her to the hospital, she coded again,’ her mother, Helena Kindred, told the news station.
Marrisha lost her battle with COVID-19 on September 23 after her family made the difficult decision to take herself off life support.
Helena is now pleading with pregnant black women to get vaccinated, saying the shot likely would have saved her daughter’s life.
‘If she had been vaccinated, I truly believe she would not have died,’ she said.
Heartbreaking: Marrisha and Myles were preparing to see their baby boy for the first time on September 19 when she stopped breathing. She died four days later
Family: Marrisha had two two other children, five-year-old Aiden (left) and six-year-old Rylee (right)
Spreading the word: Marrisha’s mother, Helena Kindred (pictured), is now begging other pregnant women to get vaccinated, saying the shot likely would have saved her daughter’s life
Helena told WGCL-TV that she remembers the moment her pregnant daughter said she wasn’t going to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
‘She gave me the reason, but I can’t remember what it was about,’ she said.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, only about 33 percent of pregnant women are vaccinated, despite data that shows the shot can prevent severe disease during pregnancy.
Pregnant black women have the lowest vaccination rates in the country compared to other racial groups at 18 percent, compared to 28 percent of pregnant Latino and Hispanic women, 35 percent pregnant white women, and 48 percent pregnant Asian women.
‘We’re dealing with it day to day,’ Helena said of their loss. ‘I want to tell people please get vaccinated.’
Marrisha, who also had two other children, Aiden, five, and Rylee, six, didn’t have health insurance. The family has started a GoFundMe for donations during this difficult time.