'So many more deaths than we could have ever imagined.' This is how America's largest city deals with its dead
Updated 7:56 PM ET, Sun May 3, 2020
His wife, Rajni Attavar, made soup for him. Mooliya struggled out of bed. With the help of eldest son, Amith, the 56-year-old subway station agent made his way to a kitchen chair in their Corona, Queens, home. Sweat beaded on his face. His mouth was open.
"I wiped his face," Attavar recalled through tears. "Then I called out his name. He didn't respond."
She sprinkled water on his head. Amith checked his father's weakening pulse. His younger son, Akshay Mooliya, 16, called 911. EMTs arrived and, for about 10 minutes, aided his breathing with a respiratory device.
They then covered him with a white blanket on the kitchen floor.
It was April 8 at 9:37 p.m., according to his death certificate. Immediate cause of death was listed as "Recent Influenza-Like Illness (Possible COVID-19)." Several hours would pass before his body was lifted off the floor and taken to a morgue -- and nearly three weeks before his cremation, family members said.
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