Family says goodbye to 109-year-old coronavirus victim

Helena Morton lived through multiple pandemics and two World Wars. Morton died Sunday at the age of 109. According to her family, Morton’s death certificate said Morton’s cause of death was COVID-19.Morton’s daughters spoke about her mother’s life.”If you would have met her, you would have liked her,” said Wanda Evnacho. “She was just one of those people that people gravitated to after they met her.”Morton was born in Poland. She lived in Germany during World War II. Evancho said her parents were forced to work the fields during the war and quickly worked to leave Germany once the war was over.”We were able to be immigrated here to the United States through the Catholic Church,” Evancho said. “We came to the United States on Aug. 6, 1951.”Morton and her husband, John, lived in western Pennsylvania the rest of their lives. Evancho said Morton was moved to a nursing home a few years ago. She says the last few weeks were difficult as the nursing home restricted visitors due to the COVID-19 pandemic.”The hardest thing was her not knowing the reason why I wasn’t seeing her every day,” Morton said.Evancho said she got a call last Friday saying her mother was ill with a fever. She was able to wear protective equipment and visit her mother one last time. At the time, Evancho said staff told her that Morton was not tested for COVID-19.”That’s what they told me is that she wasn’t tested so I’m not sure whether the information is accurate or not,” Evancho said.According to Evancho, family members found out earlier this week that the cause of death was listed as COVID-19. Morton’s funeral was Wednesday and only 10 members of the large family were able to attend.”My brothers that live out of state, the nieces and nephews that live out of state, they didn’t get the chance to see her this last time,” Evancho said.The family is hoping to plan a memorial mass for Morton once the coast is clear and social distancing measures are relaxed.

Helena Morton lived through multiple pandemics and two World Wars.

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Morton died Sunday at the age of 109. According to her family, Morton’s death certificate said Morton’s cause of death was COVID-19.

Morton’s daughters spoke about her mother’s life.

“If you would have met her, you would have liked her,” said Wanda Evnacho. “She was just one of those people that people gravitated to after they met her.”

Morton was born in Poland. She lived in Germany during World War II. Evancho said her parents were forced to work the fields during the war and quickly worked to leave Germany once the war was over.

“We were able to be immigrated here to the United States through the Catholic Church,” Evancho said. “We came to the United States on Aug. 6, 1951.”

Morton and her husband, John, lived in western Pennsylvania the rest of their lives.

Evancho said Morton was moved to a nursing home a few years ago. She says the last few weeks were difficult as the nursing home restricted visitors due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The hardest thing was her not knowing the reason why I wasn’t seeing her every day,” Morton said.

Evancho said she got a call last Friday saying her mother was ill with a fever. She was able to wear protective equipment and visit her mother one last time. At the time, Evancho said staff told her that Morton was not tested for COVID-19.

“That’s what they told me is that she wasn’t tested so I’m not sure whether the information is accurate or not,” Evancho said.

According to Evancho, family members found out earlier this week that the cause of death was listed as COVID-19.

Morton’s funeral was Wednesday and only 10 members of the large family were able to attend.

“My brothers that live out of state, the nieces and nephews that live out of state, they didn’t get the chance to see her this last time,” Evancho said.

The family is hoping to plan a memorial mass for Morton once the coast is clear and social distancing measures are relaxed.