American Seeks Justice for Aunt in Pandemic Lawsuit

Miguel Moreno
By Miguel Moreno
May 9, 2020USshare

Ray Bodine said his 86-year-old aunt has some recollection of what happened to her twin sister.

Due to their developing dementia, Lenora and Lauretta Joyce were admitted to a nursing home in Washington State. But earlier this year, the CCP virus invaded the Issaquah Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, infecting them both. Lauretta lost her sister to the disease.

This awful turn of events prompted Bodine to join a lawsuit looking to hold China financially accountable for mishandling the outbreak. As of April 30, over 13,000 plaintiffs have joined the class-action suit filed by Berman Law Group.

Anyone “directly affected or impacted by coronavirus may join the suit,” which includes business owners and the family members of victims, according to a press release from the firm.

But Bodine said he could care less about the money.

What he wants, he said, is the truth behind the outbreak in China—so it never happens again.

“Really, we did it to find the truth because this pandemic has affected all of us, all of our families,” he said in an interview with NTD News. “There are my aunts, there are your brothers and sisters, so I feel it’s very important for us to find the truth in all this.”

Lauretta and Lenora
Richard Joyce (top L) and Ray Bodine (top R) with Lauretta Joyce (bottom L) and Lenora Joyce (bottom R) in 2018. (Ray Bodine)

Lenora died on Mar. 23 and tested positive for the virus in a post mortem examination. Lauretta tested positive on March 10. Since then, Bodine said she’s been symptom-free.

But others haven’t been so fortunate.

As of April 23, more than 10,000 people have died in long-term care facilities across the country, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. So far, data from the King County Department of Public Health shows that 19 people have died at the Issaquah Nursing and Rehabilitation Center.

The twins use to be Catholic nuns, and Bodine said Lauretta seems to think that either her twin is in heaven, or still around.

“But just with the side-effects of the dementia, in speaking with Lauretta, sometimes she understands that her twin Lenora is now with the Lord,” he said. “And then there are some days that she believes that Lenora is just out for a while.”

NTD Photo
Lauretta Joyce (L), Ray Bodine (C), and Lenora Joyce (R) in the late 1960s. (Ray Bodine)

Bodine joined the lawsuit after hearing about it from his brother Richard Joyce in Florida. The Berman team said up to thousands of potential plaintiffs are inquiring daily, wanting to hold China accountable for the pandemic.

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