Florida family remembers 9-year-old girl, youngest person to die of COVID-19 in state

Kimora Lynum was very loving and bubbly, and her mom's best friend
Kimora Lynum, a loving young Florida girl dies after contracting COVID-19
Published: Jul. 26, 2020 at 11:40 PM EDT
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) - Mikasha Young-Holmes’s had only one child, and at nine years old, Kimora was her rock.

She had an extremely loving heart.

"We were extremely close. It had just been me and her for a while," said Young-Holmes.

One of their favorite things to do was to play games.

"We loved playing video games together," said Young-Holmes.

Her grandmother formed a strong bond with her only grandchild.

"I didn't give birth to her, but she was just like my own child," said Atkins.

Kimora and her mom had a tradition, a weekly shopping trip to the mall. Her favorite store was Justice.

"She loved shopping for clothes. She never lets me pick out her stuff, so she would see what she wants and just pick that out," said Young-Holmes.

On July 11th Kimora wasn't feeling well. Days later, the family went into town for a much different reason.

"We took her to the hospital, the children's pediatric," said Young-Holmes." They did a urine test and took her temperature."

Kimora's temperature was 103 degrees. The mom said her daughter was never tested for COVID-19.

"I thought they would have jumped on that when they saw here fever," said Young-Holmes.

Instead, the little girl was diagnosed with a urinary tract infection. A few days later, after a family shopping trip, they returned home, ate, played some video games, then Kimora asked to take a nap.

She filled their home with love and laughter. That all changed on the afternoon of July 17, when she didn’t wake up from her nap.

"I was shaking her, yelling at her," said Young-Holmes. "I yelled at my mom and told her to come in here because Kim is not breathing."

Kimora's grandmother said she started performing CPR.

"I was just trying to bring her back. I tried, I tried everything I could to bring her back," said Young-Holmes.

The ambulance arrived to take Kimora and her family to the hospital.

"On the way, I was just hoping and praying that they could just get her back," said Young-Holmes.

The family ultimately heard the news.

"They did all that they can," said Young-Holmes.

The family still did not know the cause of death for this healthy little girl.

"After she had passed away, they tested her, and that's when they told me she was positive for COVID," said Young-Holmes.

She said she tried to trace everyone she and her daughter had been in contact with but could not find a positive case. Young-holmes said the death is still fresh.

"At this point, I have no idea. I'm just still pretty much stuck in the now," said Young-Holmes.

Her mom said she does not know if she'll ever get over this tragedy. Although the nation may know Kimora as the youngest person in the state of Florida to die of COVID-19, her family will remember her as more than just a statistic. Instead, they will remember her as a loving daughter, a bubbly young girl whose bright future was cut short.

Lynum’s family tells TV20 a visitation and funeral are set for this weekend.

Visitation will be held at Phillip and Wiley Mortuary in Melrose on Friday from noon to 7 PM.

A graveside service will follow Saturday morning at 11, at the historic evergreen cemetery in Gainesville.

If you would like to donate to the family’s official GoFundMe page, click on the link below.

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