Alexa Rose Veit, a 15-year-old girl born with Down syndrome in Kentucky, survived a cancer diagnosis last year but lost her battle with COVID.
In July 2019, the teenager from the US was diagnosed with leukaemia and just weeks later remarkably went into remission.
“On day 30 of a two-year treatment plan, she’d beaten cancer,” Kentucky governor Andy Beshear said in a news conference on Thursday.
After feeling sick the week of Halloween, she was then diagnosed with COVID-19 on November 15.
After claiming she wasn’t feeling well, her mother picked her up from school.
In the days that followed, both Alexa and her mum were diagnosed with COVID-19.
Her mother was taken to hospital and went on a ventilator.
Alexa, meanwhile, showed mild symptoms initially and remained at home while her mum was in the hospital.
During that time, Alexa’s grandparents also tested positive for coronavirus and were hospitalised.
Alexa’s older sister had also contracted COVID-19 but had recovered.
“As the days went on, Alexa began to feel a little worse each day and was eventually hospitalised due to COVID-19 and the development of pneumonia,” Ballard County Emergency Management director Travis Holder explained.
The teenager was flown to Nashville to be cared for by her usual physicians, where her sister, who had recovered from the infection, lived with her while her mother was still being treated in the hospital.
Alexa’s health deteriorated and Mr Holder explained, she was soon put on a ventilator.
The day after Alexa’s mother was released from a hospital in Kentucky and rushed to her daughter’s side, sadly Alexa died .
“Alexa was and is a beautiful child of God and I know individuals that looked up to her, individuals whose kids looked up to her. For the positivity and enthusiasm and advocacy that she brought,” the governor said.
“This is a big loss for that community.”
Friends described Alexa as a “social butterfly” with “an infectious smile that could brighten any day”, according to Mr Holder.