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Woman Blasts Texas Governor on Virus, Then Offers an Invite

Fiana Tulip pens letter to Greg Abbott, citing his 'poor leadership' and asking him to mom's funeral
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 24, 2020 1:11 PM CDT

(Newser) – Isabelle Odette Papadimitriou was a 64-year-old respiratory therapist from Texas with no underlying health issues who died of COVID-19 on the Fourth of July, after just a week of suffering from a seemingly mild case, per the Houston Chronicle. Now, her funeral is set for Monday, and her daughter, Fiana Tulip, has asked Gov. Greg Abbott to attend—though he may not want to after reading the invite, which Tulip published as an open letter in the Statesman. Tulip writes that Papadimitriou started feeling ill on June 27, noting in her diary she felt dizzy and lightheaded, with body aches and a low-grade fever. It took Papadimitriou two days to track down a site for coronavirus testing, Tulip notes, and when she finally did, her test came back positive. She started coughing as well, but she didn't go to the hospital because she knew they were short on space.

By the time Tulip's brother called an ambulance, "it was too late," Tulip writes. She then turns her attention in the letter to Abbott, noting that her mom likely contracted the infection at the hospital where she worked, all while an initial executive order from Abbott banned local governments from implementing safety measures like wearing face masks. Tulip also told CNN that Texas should've stayed closed for longer. "There is no doubt that poor policy and terrible leadership were responsible for her death," Tulip writes, adding, "I invite you to her burial to witness our family mourning this incredible woman." The obit for Papadimitriou was just as scathing. No word from Abbott on whether he'll attend. In the meantime, the governor has since shifted his stance on face masks, mandating on July 2 they be worn in public throughout the state. (Read more Greg Abbott stories.)

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