As written: “Marian Constance Gates of Bridgeton MO died of COVID-19 on August 31, 2020 at the age of 96 in the hospital (DePaul) after three days of attempts to conquer her dreaded virus failed. She was a long time nursing home resident where she contracted this dreaded virus. Even though her short term memory began to fail, her long term memory never wavered one bit. No longer will additional wealth of her first hand family history can be shared with the rest of the family. COVID restrictions imposed on family and friend visitors were difficult on all because they prevented both from being with her at the nursing home and hospital during her final days. She was buried next to her beloved husband of many years, Curtis Gates, Sr. Our 96 year old family matriarch will be greatly missed.”
“My grandmother Dorothy survived and fought all of the common ailments that have plagued the African American community for years: Diabetes, Breast Cancer, etc…but Covid-19 hit her living facility and a couple days after my election as Committee woman she succumbed quickly and passed away in an area hospital. Away from her son, the only child, family who had to watch her transition via Zoom, but is in the medical profession. Covid 19 took a beautiful person away from us August 6, 2020 at the beautiful of age of 86..rest easy Grandma Dot.”
contact from relative/close friend (granddaughter)
Matthew Joseph Leake died from COVID-19 on August 24, 2020 at the age of 60. He was trying to beat cancer, but caught coronavirus and died alone in the hospital.
Matt was known by his friends as a giant teddybear because of his gentle, kind, big presence. He played Santa every year for 30 years and brought joy to countless children. One of his biggest loves in life was singing, and he was a previous member of the St. Louis Cathedral Archdiocesan Choir when they performed at the Vatican. Matt was a Fourth Degree Knight in the St. Ann Council of The Knights of Columbus and a devout Catholic. He’s remembered as being warmhearted, generous, a great friend, and someone you wish were your brother or son or uncle.
Matthew Leake is missed by his sisters, brothers, extended family, church family, and large circle of friends.
Margaret Mary Hellrich (nicknamed Meaux) died from complications of COVID-19 and “general health issues” on August 28, 2020 at Stearns Nursing Home in Granite City, IL. She was 58 years old and also suffering from early onset Alzheimer’s.
Although born with Down’s Syndrome, Margaret’s family loved and fully supported her so she was able to live a fulfilling life, traveling overseas to Europe and Australia and all around the country. She was very involved with the Catholic Church throughout her entire life, advanced through Special Education, and found employment and even more friends at the Sheltered Workshop. Margaret loved music, dancing, animals, camping trips, and leopard print clothes. Her special friend of 30+ years was Pete, who would take two different busses to visit her as much as possible until the nursing home locked down for COVID.
Margaret Mary Hellrich is deeply missed by her lifelong friend Pete, her sisters and brothers, friends from the sheltered workshop, church family, and all the friends she made at Stearns Nursing Home and in her life. She always had a warm smile and was a loving spirit who brought out the best in everyone.
Shirley Ann Alexander died within 72 hours of being diagnosed with COVID-19 on August 23, 2020 at the age of 87. Because of broken bones in her neck from a recent fall, the ventilator caused Shirley to suffer too much and her family made the difficult decision to remove it. A niece was able to don personal protective gear and be with her in her last moments, so she didn’t die alone like so many have.
Shirley was born and raised in St. Louis, graduating from Ursuline Academy. She moved around the country but came back to St. Louis (her favorite city) in her later years. She always had time and a chair in the kitchen to listen to your troubles and try to help, and was all around a warm and caring woman. Shirley spent the last 4 years in an excellent assisted care facility being visited 3 or more times a week by her loving family. After the COVID-19 lockdown started on March 9, the staff assisted with ZOOM video calls.
Shirley Alexander is missed by her surviving son and daughters, grandchildren, her large extended family, and the friends she made with other residents and staff at the nursing home she happily lived at in her final years.
This was a contact from a close friend/family (daughter)
Juanita Rice died of COVID-19 on August 12, 2020 at the age of 94. Although she was quite old, she had not lost her spitfire spark.
Juanita was known as “Grandma Rice” to all her neighbors, and fearless of the growing crime around her. She was practically a neighborhood institution having lived in her house 67 years. Juanita was very active in Compton Heights Baptist Church, and was involved in the Inner-City Ministry (being their “oldest member”). Juanita worked the election polls for many years, and was active in her neighborhood and community. She loved listening to and going to Cardinals games, playing rummy, shooting pool, and telling a good story.
Juanita genuinely loved people and opened her home to those in need. Through trying to make this world a little better, she taught countless others how to love and to not give up hope, just keep on fighting and believing for a miracle ‘till the end. Faced with hardship in her own life, it only gave her more empathy, and she truly consistently lived her values. She would do anything to help family, a friend or an acquaintance if they needed her. She never gave up!
Juanita is missed by her surviving children, her grand children, extended family, many friends, church, and all her neighbors and those lucky enough to know her in any way.
Lamont Hadley Senior died of COVID-19 on August 21, 2020. He was in his 60s. St. Louis lost an inspiration, treasured voice, and musical legend who still had songs left to sing.
Lamont had been singing since he was in grade-school, and his innate natural talent only blossomed more as he hit his musical stride in the 1980s and 90s, especially after joining the all-male vocal group Master’s Touch. Hadley was still singing and performing until the night before he went to the hospital. Music was truly his passion, and others have written much better and more in depth about Lamont Hadley’s life and many accomplishments. Lamont’s girlfriend of 32 years, Bridgette West, was undoubtedly his other great love. He bonded over music with his son, Lamont Hadley Jr., and took lots of pride in being a great dad.
Lamont Jr. was with his dad the night he almost collapsed while performing at a Master’s Touch reunion concert.
“During the last three songs, he got very weak and had trouble breathing,” Lamont Jr. “I had to bring a stool up on stage for him to sit down.”
The next day, Hadley was taken to the hospital, where he was initially diagnosed with pneumonia. A few days later, Lamont Jr., said doctors informed the family that his father had indeed contracted the dreaded virus.
Although Hadley’s condition continually worsened, West said that she and his family were unprepared for his demise. Since Hadley’s mother and sister had also contracted the virus and survived, they expected a similar outcome.
Sadly, Hadley slipped into a coma and passed on August 21.
Lamont Hadley Sr. is missed not only by his girlfriend, son, family, and friends, but by countless fans and coworkers and everyone whose life he touched while he was on this earth. Undoubtedly, others will discover his music now and in the future, and wish that they had the pleasure of seeing him perform while he was alive and wish he’d lived longer to make more music.
Richard Bartholic died August 8, 2020 of COVID-19. He was 82 years old and died in an assisted care facility.
Richard was married to the love of his life for 64 years and loved being a husband and father. He coached basketball, baseball, and other sports and taught his kids how to be good team players and cooperate. Richard is remembered for singing to his closest friends, loving food, and being an all around amazing friend and great guy. He had an inspiringly positive attitude while continuing to recover from a stroke and made more friends in his recovery process. After COVID-19 forced nursing homes to stop allowing visitors, his eyes would light up when the staff helped him use the phone to talk with his wife and family.
Richard Bartholic is missed deeply by his wife Gayle of 64 years, his extended family, friends at The Stroke Club (including Frank Siefried and his wife), friends he made at the assisted care facility, and everyone in his social circle.
Dwontreze Lovett died of COVID-19 in mid-August 2020 at the age of 29. He worked as a barber and raised bull dogs as Co-Op Bully Kennels.
He had a high fever which he went to the emergency room for, and never left the hospital. Nine days later getting admitted, Dwontreze passed away of pneumonia caused by the coronavirus.
His mom tells 5 On Your Side somehow Dwontreze knew that he wasn’t going to survive his battle with COVID-19 and days before he passed, the Hazelwood dad called his little girl and other relatives.
“I didn’t know it, but he had called his daughter and told her to just look for me in the sky. My granddaughter, she’s like telling me my Poppa’s in the sky. My Daddy’s in the sky. He told me to be good,” said Claudette Lovett-Carson with tears streaming down her face.
5 on Your Side – KSDK
Dwontreze is deeply missed by the love of his life, Tia who he’d just married in February, his mother, his 5 year old daughter, extended family, and friends. His passing leaves a hole in the St. Louis community and in potential friends he never made because his life was cut short.
Update on October 12, 2020 from Dwontreze’s mother:
Dwontreze T. Lovett, was my ONE AND ONLY SON. He was only 29 years old, married only 3 months, with a 5 year old daughter. He was a barber in N. County for 8 years..HE MENTORED YOUNG MEN, that crossed his path. He enjoyed being with his family. He had to divide holiday time with his 3 SIDES OF HIS FAMILY. His wife side, his mother side and his father side, AND ALL SIDES ARE LARGE. I’m THANKFUL GOD LOANED ME SUCH A WONDERFUL SON FOR 29 YEARS. He was married on Feb 9, 2020…YOU COULD FEEL THE LOVE IN THE ROOM..Its was truly a family affair. My daughter in aunt, married them. Her other aunt, was the wedding coordinator. Her other aunt and cousin were the photographer and videographer. His and Her aunts cooked and catered the food. His 1st cousin was the best man. He cousin was the DJ, FAMILY, FAMILY AND FAMILY…ITS WAS A FAMILY AFFAIR…
Richard S. Rosenthal died of COVID-19 on August 4, 2020 at the age of 86.
He got his undergrad at Washington University here in St. Louis, MO and his law degree from The University of Michigan Law School. Richard took over the family business, Rosenthal Associates, Inc. upon his father’s retirement and helped it grow to offer financial planning services and in addition to life insurance. He was a Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU) and Charted Financial Counselor (ChFC) and served in leadership roles in several life insurance industry organizations.
Richard was a lifelong learner, loved golfing, and was an active father and constant presence at his daughters’ sporting events. He mentored in the Saint Louis Public School System and supported various civic causes (among other organizations, he was a past President of the Jewish Family and Children’s Service, and also a member of the Saint Louis University Bequest and Gift Council and the Saint Louis Art Museum Foundation.).
Although Alzheimer’s had started to rob his mind, Richard accepted the disease with a cheerful manor. He had regular visitors up until the nursing homes shut down in March due to COVID-19 precautions, and still recognized his wife of 57 years and good friends.
Richard is missed deeply by his wife, his extended family, and his wide and varied circle of friends.
Dianne Dolores Fahr of St. Charles MO, died from complications of COVID-19 on August 5th, 2020 at the age of 83. She had a relentlessly positive spirit, and even after her memories and mind started to fade from the ravages of dementia in her last decade, she still saw the beauty and good in everyone. Dianne was saying “I love you” until the very end.
Dianne is missed deeply by her son and daughter, and by her two grandsons and small extended family.
Martin F. King died August 7, 2020 from COVID-19 at the age of 86. He and his beloved wife were preparing to celebrate their 60th wedding anniversary this month.
Marty was a proud Naval officer and member of the Naval Reserves, when he met his future wife Julia on leave in 1958 and married her in 1960. They raised 11 children together, and took their family on countless camping trips, sharing with them a love and respect of the outdoors. He’s remembered as being incredibly kind and upbeat.
As his obituary so eloquently states: “Marty’s life was driven by his commitment to “The Four F’s”: Faith, Family, Friends and Fishing. It was this last commitment that was instrumental in the 1989 establishment of the Missouri Stream Team organization. He was a lifelong member of the Conservation Federation of Missouri and Ozark Fly Fishers. He shared this passion with countless friends, family and strangers.”
Martin King is missed deeply by his wife Julia, his adult children and their spouses (who he considered his children also), his grandchildren, extended family, his fellow fly fishing and conservation friends, and anyone who was lucky enough to know him.
Paul Rusnack MD, a retired clinical pathologist, died of COVID-19 related pneumonia at the age of 87 on August 3, 2020 at Belleville Memorial Hospital in Belleville Illinois.
He received his medical degree from Saint Louis University in 1959. After completion of his four-year pathology residency program at Saint Louis University, Paul served as Director of the 5th Army Medical Laboratory in St. Louis, MO. He worked as a certified clinical pathologist at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in Belleville, IL, for 22 years until he retired in 1988.
In retirement, Paul loved golfing and playing card games with his close circle of friends. He was also active in various civic and parish groups such as the St. Claire Medical Society, Belleville Rotary Club, St. Henry Parish, and the St. Louis Art Museum. Paul was a lifelong St. Louis Cardinals fan.
Paul Rusnack is missed deeply by his wife of 61 years, his children, grandchildren, and extended family.
Euda E. “Pete” Dean died of COVID-19 on August 4th, 2020. A former math professor, he had suffered dementia for several years. In retirement, he and his late wife moved from Texas to St. Louis to be closer to their children and grandchildren.
According to his obituary:
“Born and raised in east Texas (the nickname “Pete” by which he was always known, was given by staff of the newborn nursery, where he cried so much they called him “Pistol Pete”), he became captain of the Abilene Christian College football team in the mid-1950s, before pursuing a career as a professor of mathematics.
He obtained his doctorate from Texas Christian University and taught for over two decades at the University of Texas at Arlington before moving to Stephenville, TX and spending the last decade of his career teaching at Tarleton State University.”
Euda is missed by his small but very close extended family.
Afi Williams died of COVID-19 on August 6, 2020 at the age of 47. He grew up in Jennings, attended University of Missouri St. Louis (UMSL), and was a devoted father to his three children. Afi had a true zest for life, that was enthusiastically communicated to all who knew him.
Afi was an “essential worker” at Handyman True Value hardware store on Washington St. in Florissant (according to Facebook comments) and he thought he caught COVID-19 from a coworker who had recently gone to a large party. The coworker came to work sick and was sent home, but not before he gave it to Afi (and maybe others).
Afi Williams is missed deeply by his three young children, his family, and his wide circle of friends and acquaintances. Nobody ever had anything bad to say about him, and his future was bright and brightened others.
As the GoFundMe (to pay for funeral expenses and to help out his kids) states:
To the world, Afi is another statistic that gets lumped into the life loss and cloud of chaos that have become the norm of this unthinkable pandemic. But let us take this time to reflect and understand that there are faces and families…love and life…heartbreak and pain associated with each number, dot and line on those daily totals and data charts we’ve seen flashing across our TV and computer screens.
There is no easy way to memorialize someone who has touched so many lives, who had such a bright future, who leaves behind so many who deeply cared for him, and whose life was cut short. I encourage everyone reading this to donate to his memorial fund, share John Hamilton’s post, and take precautions to keep you and your loved ones as safe and healthy as possible… and to take action so that more lives are not lost in vain to COVID-19, even if that’s simply wearing a mask and avoiding parties until this passes.
Sources (will be updated if any new ones are found):