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Father and son each die from COVID-19 two days apart

A metro Detroit family is trying to overcome the pain of COVID-19's devastating impact losing two family members.

Both Nate Slappey Sr. and his son Nate Slappey Jr. died of complications from COVID-19.

"It started at the end of March," said Nate Slappey III. "Grandfather passed away April 30, then my dad passed away two days later on May 2nd.

"We being people of faith know we didn't lose them, they passed away, but we know where they are. To be absent from the body is to be present with The Lord."
When Nate's grandfather, a lead pastor at a Detroit church started feeling sick, Nate's dad and uncle rushed him to the hospital. Then came a diagnosis of COVID 19.

Then, a short time later Nate Slappey II stated starting to show symptoms.
The father and son were both hospitalized but Nate Sr. was starting to get better and was set to be discharged - then the virus took over.

"He got rushed down to ICU and there were complications," Nate said.


This father and son duo would eventually lose their battles with the virus. Nate Jr. who owned a clothing line and was the girls’ basketball coach at Detroit Country Day, passed away days before his 50th birthday. 

His son says his father used opportunities like coaching to teach family values like integrity to his students.
"Even through his business his clothing line, he also started a foundation with values adjacent to what he (taught) with his coaching," he said.
And the values passed on from two lives that this son and grandson will lean on. and he hopes during this crisis that others, will too.
"I feel like that's the biggest thing we need right now to help us all though this, is understanding and love," Nate said.