NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – CBS2 is continuing our series honoring the people we’ve lost to the coronavirus pandemic.
CBS2’s Cindy Hsu remembers two women who held a driving passion for helping all of their children.
Sharon Nearby grew up on Staten Island, met her husband Jeff nearly 20 years ago, and had twins, Samantha and Rebecca.
Sharon taught English for more than 25 years at IS 24 where her sister is a social studies teacher and their mom a reading specialist.
This close-knit family lost Sharon to complications of the coronavirus on April 4. She was 52 and just days away from her birthday.
Her daughters are 14-years-old, and Jeff says she was a wonderful mother and fierce advocate for her kids – always hands-on, from Brownie troop leader to band mom when the girls joined the Tottenville High School marching band.
The family would joke they couldn’t go anywhere on Staten Island without running into someone Sharon knew or taught in the decades she dedicated to education.
Lunisol Guzman was born in the Dominican Republic, moved to Newark in her 20s and raised two daughters and a son.
She worked as a shuttle bus driver for Montclair State University and married her love of more than a decade, Ismael Lugo, last year.
Ismael died from the coronavirus on April 11, and three weeks later Lunisol passed away from COVID-19-related complications. She was 50 years old.
Her first three children are adults and a few years ago, she became a foster parent to Zavion and his little sister, Jazzmyn. She and her husband recently adopted them.
Her oldest daughter, Katherine, says she and the family will now raise the little ones.