Nicholas Caravassi, 68, of Aubrey, Texas, formerly of Fords, N.J., died on March 28, 2020, after becoming ill with COVID-19. He’s among the more than 540,000 Americans who have lost their lives to the disease since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic early last year.
His wife, Carol Caravassi, told Yahoo News that her husband was a kind and outgoing person who made friends everywhere he went.
“Some people collect things,” Caravassi said. “I always told Nick, he collected friends wherever we went.”
CAROL CARAVASSI: My name is Carol Caravassi, and I lost my husband to COVID-19. I really think that I was one of the lucky ones to have been connected to a man like him for so many years. And I just wish that everybody could be that lucky and everybody should have a net in their lives, because he was just a great guy, loved life, loved everybody in it.
My husband Nick and I were married for 48 years. And Nick was the most friendly, outgoing person. I was always the shy one. And he would be out in the neighborhood meeting all the neighbors and dragging me out to meet everybody.
But he was just the kind of person who wanted to do everything for me and everything for our son, who is now 31 years old. And I kept telling him all these years that if you don't let me do things on my own, how am I ever going to know how to do them? And now here I am trying to figure it out on my own. So he really did take very, very good care of both myself and our son.
He was the light of his life. He devoted every minute to our son's needs and wants. And Nick was the type of person, he was very, very cautious early on in his younger years. And then at 47 years old, he had a heart attack. Well, that-- if that's not a wake-up call, I don't know what is.
I mean, thankfully, he survived and thrived, and he became this person that threw caution to the wind completely. He became a certified scuba diver. He flew a helicopter. He just did wild and crazy things, which was perfect for raising a teenage boy. My son just thought his father was awesome because he did all of these cool and dangerous things. So they had a great, great relationship.
And yeah, he just said life is short, and there was too many things that I just put aside and didn't do because I was afraid, I was scared. He said, you know, I made it through once. I think maybe he thought he had nine lives, so he just went a little crazy.
So one of the things Nick and I both agreed on and agreed to spend our money if-- whatever we had, is to travel and go on vacation, and we did it every year. Some people collect things. I always told Nick he collected friends wherever we went. We have friends in Italy, and England, and people that we met, and he just kept in touch with them. So he was pretty good at that.
Nick and I lived our whole lives in New Jersey. We lived in the same house and raised our son. We were there for 40 years. And after we both retired, our son had already been relocated to Texas, and we decided we didn't want to stay in New Jersey. So we decided we might as well come to Texas and be a little bit closer to him.
So we sold our house, packed up, moved out of New Jersey, said goodbye to both of our families in January of 2020. We were going to take a month on the road visiting and stopping different places. Turned out it was the best road trip ever. So after a month, we arrived in Texas.
We moved in-- closed and moved into our new house on March 4, which was our 48th wedding anniversary. So it was a really big day of celebrations. So we were sitting on the floor drinking out of paper wine cups, watching Netflix movies on his computer for a week or so until he started to feel ill.
Less than two weeks, I had to bring him to the hospital. And he promised he would come home to me, but, of course, that never happened. The last month or two was the most exciting we'd ever had, so the best months and the worst months of my life all happened in March of 2020.
I came down with COVID, and I was admitted to the hospital. And shortly after that-- I don't even remember anything about it, but shortly after that, I was put on a vent also. My husband And I were in adjoining rooms, head-to-head, being treated by the same doctors and the same nurses. And I was on a ventilator past the date when he passed, so I didn't learn about his death until-- it was three or-- three weeks later when I woke up, and my son had to tell me the bad news. So that was very difficult for him and for me.
It's very hard that I survived and he didn't. I ask myself every day why, and what if this had happened, and what if I had done this or he had done that, would it have worked out differently? We always-- neither one of us wanted to do this without each other. I just-- I-- it's-- it's really, really-- really hard to do this without him.
And the fact that I know Nick would want me to keep going, he's-- he's pushing me. And I-- and I know when I break down and cry and I can't do something, I can't fix something, I can't-- you know, whatever it is, it's all of a sudden, there's this burst of understanding and knowledge and I get through it. And then I just look up and say, thanks, honey. I needed that.