Joseph and Yolanda Dellis - Gone but not forgotten online


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Joseph and Yolanda Dellis

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Joseph Dellis and Yolanda Dellis met at a Brooklyn bowling alley nearly 40 years ago. Joseph gave Yolanda some unsolicited advice on wrist technique that would help better her bowling game. After nearly a decade of dating, the two married in the early '90s, becoming inseparable, even as Yolanda was no longer able to walk upstairs to their bedroom because of a years-old hip injury. “My dad would — God bless him — he would sleep on the couch downstairs so if she woke up in the middle of the night she could look across and see him,” Marisa Vitolo, their daughter, told BuzzFeed News. That changed when Joseph, 88, left for the hospital on March 22, marking the last time he’d see his wife of 28 years. “He looked like he was very fatigued and he wasn’t 100% making sense,” Vitolo said of her stepfather, who married her mom, Yolanda, the year she graduated high school. Yolanda was taken to the hospital the following day after her home health aide said she wasn’t keeping food down. Vitolo said she was able to get her parents into the same hospital. Unable to travel in the ambulance, Vitolo said she sent a note with the driver explaining that her mother suffered from Alzheimer’s and that her husband had been admitted to Coney Island Hospital a day earlier. “I don’t know if they ever told my dad that my mom was there,” Vitolo said. The couple died within days of each other after testing positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.