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Man with COVID dies while awaiting transfer to hospital

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Man with COVID dies while awaiting transfer to hospital

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WORCESTER, Mass. – A Massachusetts man and pizza restaurant owner died while waiting for a hospital bed to open after contracting COVID-19

Antonios “Tony” Tsantinis, 68, of East Brookfield died on December 10. He had fallen ill just after Thanksgiving, and his longtime girlfriend, Angela DiUlio, was also ill. During a trip to the emergency room, they both tested positive for COVID-19.

They posted on social media on November 30, telling people that their Athens Pizza business would be closed, a rare event, due to their positive tests.

Tsantinis was admitted to a hospital in Southbridge after his daughter, Rona Tsantinis-Roy, realized he had become much sicker. He needed additional care which the hospital was unable to provide and a search ensued for an available hospital bed.

“They called every hospital within a 75-mile radius,” Tsantinis-Roy said, adding that by the time there was a spot for him in a Connecticut hospital, he was too ill to be transferred.

Antonios “Tony” Tsantinis

As he battled COVID-19, his kidneys began to fail and he needed dialysis, according to NPR.

Shortly after, Tsantinis-Roy and his brother, Andy Tsantinis, saw their father, but it was to say goodbye.

“He literally looked me in the eye and said this shouldn’t happen,” Tsantinis-Roy told NPR when the doctor told him his father was dead.

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Tsantinis was unvaccinated and “didn’t believe in vaccines,” Tsantinis-Roy told the outlet.

Tsantinis-Roy said she thought her father should have had more time, but at that time there was a ventilator and the need for dialysis and the realization that there was nothing left that could save the father, grandfather, friend, farmer and the device behind the pizzeria counter.

COVID-19 cases have been on the rise since the omicron variant emerged in November last year. Modelers predict there could be 50,000 to 300,000 more Americans dying from the virus until the new wave of cases subsides in mid-March, according to the Associated Press.

Kim Ring contributed to this report

This article originally appeared on Telegram & Gazette: Massachusetts pizzeria owner with COVID dies while waiting for hospital bed

Man with COVID dies while awaiting transfer to hospital

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