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Mother of 8 fighting for her life on a ventilator after falling ill with COVID-19

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Posted at 11:18 AM, Sep 20, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-20 11:28:11-04

GLOUCESTER, Va. — A mother of eight from Gloucester, Virginia, is fighting for her life after getting COVID-19.

“As soon as they checked her oxygen levels, they said, 'You really need to go to the hospital,'” said Brian Bayford about his wife.

Now, 25 days later, 56-year-old Dorothy Bayford is on a ventilator.

“My wife’s life is hour-to-hour, it’s day-to-day. We don’t know what is going to happen from one point to another,“ Brian Bayford said.

Brian Bayford has been posting constant updates on Facebook and said he has received comments from people in 11 different countries and 34 different states.

“Some people send me messages saying, 'I don’t know you and you don’t know me, but we are praying for you and your wife every day.' That kind of support is just unbelievable and melts my heart,“ Brian Bayford said. “She is sedated, and I read the posts to her every day. I read, listen to music, those types of things make a big difference. “

He said the response from complete strangers has been tremendous, but said a small number of comments have been harsh, regarding the couple not getting vaccinated.

Brian Bayford said the couple both got COVID-19 at the same time. He got better, but Dorothy got worse.

This family has been through a lot after Brian Bayford said his first wife died in a car accident.

His three daughters, who were also in the car, survived the accident. Dorothy Bayford has two sons, then the couple adopted three more girls, bringing the total to eight kids.

“I was the worst out of all eight. My mom said I gave her most of her gray hairs,” said Jazzmine Bayford.

She said there are 18 grandkids with two more on the way.

Now, they are all coming together and praying, even outside Dorothy's hospital window before they were allowed in when she was still testing positive for COVID-19.

“She will not stop fighting. She is definitely a fighter,” said Jace Harris, the eldest of the children.

Now, Dorothy's family says they are raising money to help pay for medical bills.

Brian Bayford said Dorothy is the love of his life and called on everyone to show each other more love as our country deals with the pandemic.

“We don’t need separation anymore in this country, in any way, shape, or form. People need to support each other, and people need to love each other,” Brian Bayford said.

To donate to the family's GoFundMe, click here.

This story was originally published by Margaret Kavanagh at WTKR.