Esther Akinsanya - Gone but not forgotten online


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Esther Akinsanya

Story Posted By: Samuel Akinsanya
Relationship to the deceased: Son
It’s been two weeks since Samuel Akinsanya’s mother, Esther, died, and he’s still constantly replaying in his head the last conversation they had. She FaceTimed him from her hospital bed to tell him that she was going to be sedated because her breathing had gotten worse and told Samuel to look after his 14-year-old sister, something she often instructed him to do. “She was struggling to talk. Her breathing was so bad,” Samuel said. She died two hours later, in the same London hospital where just a week before she had been working on the front line treating coronavirus patients. Samuel’s 61-year-old aunt — Esther’s sister and a fellow nurse — is still in the ICU after coming out of a coma. The two sisters who lived and worked together had both tested positive for the coronavirus. Samuel, 27, believes that in her final moments, his mother intentionally kept the full extent of her illness from him. He has since found out that before she video-called him, Esther had called an uncle in Nigeria to tell him that her kidney had ruptured and asked him to look out for her kids. “I feel like she was trying to give me and my sister hope, that's the bit that breaks me up all the time,” Samuel told BuzzFeed News. “She knew she was going but in her last moment, she thought, Let me just give hope to my children, that I'm still coming home, that I'm going to be fine, I'm in the best hands. I just pray that in her last moments she wasn't in too much pain, but I'll never know.” A young Samuel with his sister Racheal and their mother Esther. “My mother lit up a room when she walked in,” he said. “It was impossible not to like her.”