North Jersey family who almost lost father to COVID-19 share story of triumph to give hope to other families

A north Jersey family who almost lost their patriarch to COVID-19 is sharing their story of trial to triumph to give hope to other families.

News 12 Staff

May 10, 2021, 2:14 AM

Updated 1,108 days ago

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A north Jersey family who almost lost their patriarch to COVID-19 is sharing their story of trial to triumph to give hope to other families.
The Arriaga family sang their praises for the medical staff at the Valley Hospital, where their father was released after spending 100 days being treated for COVID-19.
Ruben Arriaga Sr., 59, is what some would call a COVID-19 miracle patient - defying every odd.
The father of four was hospitalized with COVID-19 on January 20, and shortly after was placed on a ventilator.
The Arriaga family had been down this road just a few short months earlier - when Ruben's brother lost his life to COVID-19.
Ruben spent 69 days on a ventilator, and his family prayed that he would have a different outcome. But, his prognosis was bleak.
"He had bilateral pneumonia," says Agatha Palko, his daughter.
Ruben continued to fight. After 100 days at Valley, Ruben was free of COVID-19 and moved to the hospital of the University of Pennsylvania where he's being evaluated for a lung transplant.
Ruben is being evaluated as doctors are allowing his body to recuperate from COVID-19 before moving forward. If the condition of his lungs deteriorate, he could get the transplant sooner.
He still has a long road ahead but he and his family are more hopeful than ever.


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