‘Heartbreaking’: After losing mom to virus, Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia says stepdad has also died of COVID-19 complications

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Two weeks after losing his mother to COVID-19, Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia on Monday said his stepfather also died of complications from the virus.

Mayor Robert Garcia's stepfather, Greg O’Donnell, and his mother, Gaby O'Donnell, are seen in a photo shared by the mayor's office.
Mayor Robert Garcia’s stepfather, Greg O’Donnell, and his mother, Gaby O’Donnell, are seen in a photo shared by the mayor’s office.

“We are incredibly saddened to share that my stepfather, Greg O’Donnell, has passed away due to complications from COVID-19 It’s a heartbreaking loss for our entire family, especially for my brother Jake,” Garcia wrote in a statement. “Jake and I want to thank the heroic nurses and doctors who cared for him in his last days.”

O’Donnell passed away Sunday, one day after a memorial service was held for his wife, Gaby O’Donnell, according to the mayor.

He was “the best husband our mom could have ever hoped for,” Garcia wrote. “Greg was a kind and good-hearted man, an amazing father and grandfather.”

He owned his own successful small business, working alongside Garcia’s brother, according to the mayor.

“[O’Donnell] worked hard for his family,” he said.

Garcia first revealed on July 13 that the couple, who were married for 27 years, had both tested positive for the virus. The mayor’s mother — a longtime health care worker who worked in the same clinic for 25 years — died of complications from the respiratory illness about two weeks later.

Gaby O’Donnell “put her own life on the line to save others when the pandemic hit,” Los Angeles County Supervisor Janice Hahn said after her death.

As of Monday morning, Long Beach has recorded 8,775 total cases of the novel coronavirus, with 181 deaths, according to the city’s health department. More than 7,400 patients have recovered.

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