“We had so much to live for,” Alan Silverman’s wife, Janine, tells us
Alan Silverman died Oct. 23, at the age of 66 after spending six weeks in the hospital with Covid-19. He had no comorbidities and no pre-existing conditions.
Alan was a proud small business owner who had recently moved to Morristown, New Jersey after living in Manhattan for 36 years. In early September, he started feeling unwell, and on Labor Day he began to have difficulty breathing. He went to his local hospital for treatment but was sent home that night; his condition continued to worsen.
Two days later, desperate to help him, Alan’s wife Janine brought him back to the ER. “I just can’t do anything else for you,” she told him.
As a precaution, Janine and her family members were tested for Covid-19 and six out of the seven tested received positive results — including Janine and her 84-year-old mother. Because Janine had tested positive, she was unable to go into the hospital with her husband and was forced to leave him at the door of the ER.
Then it was “like six weeks of hell,” Janine said, “It just was a downward spiral.”
Janine was also caring for her mother, a high-risk patient with a complicated medical history, who was admitted to the hospital shortly after Alan was. “At the time, there were only four people in the Covid section of the hospital and two of them were mine,” Janine said.
Janine’s mother was released after a week, but after two weeks of treatment and participation in a clinical trial, Alan was put on a ventilator and put into a medically induced coma.
“He was a mile away at the hospital, and I couldn’t see him at all,” Janine said, “I was never able to talk to him or say anything to him, but I would Zoom him at night. I would just hold him on my phone and talk to him and just fall asleep.”
After four weeks on the ventilator, the hospital called Janine to tell her Alan wouldn’t make it. She begged them to let her come say goodbye. “They put me in a hazmat suit, and gave me 40 minutes with him… He died in my arms right there.”
Janine described Alan as a gentle giant — a big guy with the biggest heart. “He never said no to anybody,” she said, “He was just an incredible partner… He was generous with his heart, his love, his time.”
Alan is survived by his wife, three children, step-daughter and granddaughter.
“His kids adored him. They loved him,” Janine said, “We just had a granddaughter in December. Her name is Sage. We were just in California in July. It was the first time he saw her.”
“I’ve been telling people, things like this don’t happen to my family. This happens to people on the news,” Janine said, “Sixty-six years old is too young. We had so much to live for.”
Written and reported by Adriana Fazio