Breaking News
More () »

Entire family on the mend from COVID-19 sends message of hope to those still fighting it

Five people in the same family tested positive for the virus, but now that they're improving, they want to focus on the recovery.

ATLANTA — Four-year-old Owen stopped playing with his trucks, to bow his head and pray for his Opa to get better. 

Chuck Paulus is hospitalized with COVID-19 and has been on life support for a month. Owen's grandma, aunt, uncle, and little cousin all had the virus as well.

Now that they're all on the mend, they want to send a message of hope to other families fighting the disease.  

There has been a lot of yelling on the COVID-19 floor where Chuck Paulus is hospitalized. 

"Dad's a huge Ohio State fan, and very hard of hearing, so we have told the nurses, that if they yell OH, my Dad will reply IO if he can.," said Chuck's daughter, Brandee Hanes. "So, that's another way that Dad knows we are in contact with the nurses and staffing, because how else would they know to say that?"

They haven't been able to see him since they dropped him off at the hospital a month ago.

He was on life support and in a coma until just a few days ago. 

"Dad is doing really, really good," she said. "We have had more days of progress and that is a blessing -- an absolute blessing."

Chuck's wife, Nancy got sick right after he did and ended up in the hospital for nine days.

His son, daughter-in-law and granddaughter all got sick, too.

"Every one of us, out of all four of us -- our chief complaint was something different," said Chuck's son, Bob Paulus. "We were able to interconnect that I had something similar with my mom or my wife had something similar with my dad, but at the time, we weren' able to connect all the dots."

RELATED: Real-time updates: Kemp to reopen gyms, fitness centers, nail salons, barbers on 4/24 with restrictions

They were never able to get their 18-month-old daughter tested, but they all tested positive for COVID-19.

"I had fully recovered by the time I got the results that I did have it," said Diana Paulus.

They don't have a clue how their family got it.

Bob is a firefighter. Diane is a nurse anesthetist at Grady Memorial Hospital. Chuck and Nancy do a lot of outreach with their church. So, they could have been exposed in any number of ways.

But they want people to focus on the recovery, not the illness. 

"We hear a lot of doom and gloom and don't hear the success stories," Nancy said. "And there are some. Like the Bible says, this too, shall pass." 

They're determined to bring Chuck back home soon, so he can cheer for Ohio State from his living room.

The family wants everyone who is sick to know they are cheering for them to get better.

"Just know that you're loved and supported because we have been there and just know that there's a light at the end of the tunnel," Brandee said.

11Alive is focusing our news coverage on the facts and not the fear around the virus.  We want to keep you informed about the latest developments while ensuring that we deliver confirmed, factual information. 

We will track the most important coronavirus elements relating to Georgia on this page. Refresh often for new information. 


Young sister entrepreneurs see a boom in business because of coronavirus

Massachusetts becoming new hotspot as US virus deaths top 40,000

Proposed bill would cancel rent and mortgages during COVID-19 pandemic

Oil price goes negative as demand collapses; Wall Street dips

Feds to track, publicly share info on nursing home COVID-19 outbreaks

She spent a year living in Antarctica; here's her advice for sheltering in place

Before You Leave, Check This Out