At Least 18 Members Of One Family Have The Coronavirus After A Surprise Birthday Party

fI would have more empathy or this kind of thing if it were back in March and I hadn’t just spent the last 4 months abiding by social distancing guidelines and NOT seeing my own family because with a pandemic raging through the world, NOT coming into close contact with your family is actually the most caring thing you can do.

Ron Barbosa’s family has always been close. Members of the Dallas-area family see each other practically every day, and when the coronavirus pandemic struck, many of them thought it would be OK to continue spending time together.

But after family members went golfing and threw a surprise birthday dinner party for one of Barbosa’s family members last month, at least 18 members of the extended family have become sick with COVID-19.

Three have become so ill that they have been hospitalized: Barbosa’s 88-year-old dad, his 86-year-old mom, and his sister, who is going through chemotherapy for breast cancer.

“Everybody says, ‘Oh, it’s my family. I’m going to go see my brother. I’m going to see my cousin,’ and they think that’s a safe word,” Barbosa told BuzzFeed News.

While they aren’t certain if the virus started spreading among the family at the May 30 party, Barbosa, 53, who did not attend the gathering, said that based on the time they started to see symptoms, it seems like the initial transmission among family members happened that weekend.