Woman dies days after sister became first Illinois coronavirus death

An older sister of Illinois’ first coronavirus victim has also died from the disease, according to reports.

Wanda Bailey, 63, of Crete, died Wednesday at a hospital in Olympia Fields nine days after COVID-19 claimed the life of her younger sister, Patricia Frieson, a 61-year-old retired nurse who marked the state’s first known coronavirus fatality on March 16, the Chicago Tribune reports.

Bailey died of pneumonia due to COVID-19 infection with heart disease, hypertension and lung disease as contributing factors, officials from the Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office told the newspaper.

It’s unclear how Bailey — one of nine siblings — got infected because she largely stayed at home due to her health problems, brother Richard Frieson said.

But Bailey and her sister — who lived on Chicago’s South Side — did attend church together, the newspaper reports, citing social media posts.

Richard Frieson told the Tribune last week that a second sister of his had been hospitalized for respiratory issues, but he declined to identify her.

“We’re all very close,” Frieson said, adding that his sisters hung out regularly.

Relatives were “hopeful” the second sibling would recover while in the hospital, Frieson said previously, adding that other family members were staying in isolation with the assumption they also had been infected.

Bailey is survived by her husband and at least one son, a family friend told the Chicago Sun-Times.

Her brother Anthony Frieson acknowledged Bailey’s death on social media late Wednesday, saying the family lost “another beautiful soul,” the Sun-Times reports.

“Pat and Wanda loved their family and more importantly loved their Lord,” the post read. “In a blink of an eye, life can change. Please continue to pray for our family.”

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