ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (WFLA) — Friends and family of a young St. Petersburg woman are asking the community for help.
Claire Bridges, 20, is fighting for her life after she recently contracted COVID-19. She was admitted to the hospital on Jan. 16 and is currently on life support. Her friends tell 8 On Your Side she is vaccinated.
Bridges was born with a serious heart condition, and because of complications and an infection, her condition worsened, as a result, doctors will have to amputate both of her legs. However, her friends say when she found out, she didn’t react the way everyone thought she would.
“She said I want bionic legs, and that’s how Claire is a positive bright light,” Heather Valdes said.
Friends describe Bridges as full of life, someone who makes everyone smile and lights up a room.
“She’s the person who will hype you up,” Caprice Alfred said. “She’s always happy.”
Bridges is a kavatender at Grassroots Kava House. Her coworkers are like family.
“We call her Clurby,” Valdes said.
Valdes started a GoFundMe earlier this week and it’s already raised more than $40,000. Friends say the support so far is overwhelming.
“My heart grew when I saw how many people came together so far,” Vanessa Rodriguez said.
They know their friend’s life will change, and she’ll have a long road ahead to recovery. They’re trying to do everything they can so she has nothing to worry about when she comes back home.
“She was told about everything going on, it means so much to know she has support, her family is grateful as well,” Valdes said. “She’s loved and she’s made a huge impact on everyone she’s come in contact with.”