"Alexa was and is a beautiful child of God and I know individuals that looked up to her, individuals whose kids looked up to her," Kentucky governor Andy Beshear said.
Not all fighters live to tell the tale, no matter how fiercely they gave their heart into it. As sad as that sounds, it is now a reality as we have lost Alexa Rose Veit, a 15-year-old Kentucky girl born with Down Syndrome. She was diagnosed with leukemia in July 2019, and just weeks later, went into remission. "On day 30 of a two-year treatment plan, she'd beaten cancer," Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear said in a news conference Thursday, after receiving permission from the teen's family to share more about her life, CNN reported.
Today, Gov. Andy Beshear confirmed the coronavirus-related death of a girl from Ballard County. Tonight, we're learning more about the girl, 15-year-old Alexa Rose Veit, whose life was cut tragically short because of the illness. https://t.co/jm90Q3Ir6H— WPSD Local 6 (@WPSDLocal6) November 19, 2020
That was more or less the kind of person she was, according to the governor. She would never let anything get in the way of accomplishing what she set her mind to. Unfortunately, we are deeply saddened to report that Alexa succumbed to COVID-19 on November 15. To friends, she was known as a "social butterfly" with "an infectious smile that could brighten any day," according to Travis Holder, the Ballard County Emergency Management director. "She was a freshman at Ballard Memorial High School, a member of the Choir, an active member of her church youth group, and (thoroughly) enjoyed time with her family and friends," Holder wrote in a Facebook post.
Gov. Beshear: Says among today's 30 new COVID-19-related deaths is a substitute teacher. Awaiting premission to release additional information. Yesterday we announced our first student we've lost. Alexa Rose Veit of Ballard Memorial High School. Survived leukemia but caught virus pic.twitter.com/BsdRxbFn65— Brad Hughes (@GYMObrad) November 19, 2020
During the week of Halloween, Alexa began to experience several symptoms of obvious sickness and had her mom pick her up from school. Both were diagnosed with COVID-19 in the following days. Her mother was hospitalized and placed on a ventilator, Holder said, while Alexa at first showed mild symptoms and stayed at home. During that time, the teen's grandparents also tested positive for the virus and were hospitalized, Holder said. "As the days went on Alexa began to feel a little worse each day and was eventually hospitalized due to COVID-19 and the development of pneumonia," Holder added.
ALEXA ROSE VEIT, age 15, of Ballard County, Kentucky, died of COVID on Nov. 15.— FacesOfCOVID (@FacesOfCOVID) November 20, 2020
"Our world is a little less bright today without Alexa in it, and she will be missed always."https://t.co/EPUArgu8op pic.twitter.com/tZEGyI20Ke
Alexa was immediately flown to Nashville and placed under the care of her doctors. Her older sister had recently recovered from COVID-19 and remained by her side throughout. That still didn't help as Alexa's health continued to decline over the days and she was soon placed on a ventilator. On November 15, a day after her mother was released from a Kentucky hospital and rushed to her daughter's side, Alexa breathed her last.
The state's first student passed away from COVID-19. She's been identified as 15-year-old Alexa Rose Veit out of Ballard County. Her mom was also hospitalized w/ COVID and when she was released, she rushed to her daughter's side who died a day later. MORE: https://t.co/KYqGN3zpf5 pic.twitter.com/3RkZMaWjtm— kellydeannews (@kellydeannews) November 21, 2020
"Alexa was and is a beautiful child of God and I know individuals that looked up to her, individuals whose kids looked up to her," the governor said. "For the positivity and enthusiasm and advocacy that she brought. This is a big loss for that community. We have got to come to the realization that this is real," Holder wrote. "This isn't political, it's not something that 'has always been here' it is real. We must start taking the precautions seriously."
We lost my 15-year old stepdaughter to pneumonia that had developed from COVID-19 this past Sunday, after she beat leukemia in just 30 days last year. This is her story. We hope it encourages people to wear their mask. 🧡https://t.co/WD1kibZrk9— •bella• (@chzgrate) November 21, 2020
The governor had recently announced new state measures to help curb the spread of the virus, which is fast approaching its 10th month since the pandemic was declared. He said Thursday the state recorded their highest number of daily COVID-19 cases, with over 3,600 fresh ones. "Those who knew Alexa asked us to help raise awareness of how deadly this virus is and how important it is to follow the guidelines in place," Beshear said in the news conference. "Today and every day, I'll wear my mask for Alexa, and I hope you will too. This upcoming holiday week is a special time for all of our families, and I know everyone wants to have a normal Thanksgiving after such a difficult year,” Beshear added in a statement. “I wish more than anything that we could go back to normal safely, but we can’t."