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Grandmother of Union City councilman dies from COVID-19 at Hayward nursing home

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UNION CITY, Calif. (KRON) – A Union City councilman is speaking out after his grandmother passed away from COVID-19 which she contracted while living at Gateway Care and Rehabilitation Center in Hayward. 

Since Emma Patino passed away Monday from complications of coronavirus, just 11 days shy of her 85th birthday, her family has been trying to process what happened. 

“We’re still in shock, we’re grieving right now, right now is to mourn, remember and celebrate her life,” Jaime Patino said. 

Emma, the grandmother of Union City Councilman Jaime Patino, had been living at Gateway Care and Rehabilitation Center for more than two years. 

Her family says she was the 10th resident to die after contracting COVID-19 there. Health officials announced on Tuesday that an 11th resident had died.

“When she was transferred to Kaiser in San Leandro, I had even more hope, because I was telling family members, at least she’s going to get a higher quality of care there than she’s been getting at Gateway,” Patino said. 

Patino’s grandmother was transferred to the hospital on Friday, at which time she was already suffering from pneumonia, kidney failure, cardiac distress, and septic shock. 

Patino says Gateway never reached out to the family about his grandmother’s health, they first heard of the outbreak at the facility in the news.

“They’ve totally dropped the ball, management’s totally dropped the ball. They should have reached out and asked for help days, if not weeks, before this whole thing blew up,” Patino said. 

Now Patino, who is running for Union City Mayor, is speaking out in hopes of providing support for other grieving families.

“There are 65 other families that we know of that are suffering right now, and I’m doing it to advocate for them too, and we are all going to be in this together,” Patino said. 

Gateway has not responded to multiple requests for comment from KRON4. 

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