The wife of 31-year-old Bonifacio Eugenio-Romero, a Mexican migrant worker who died of COVID-19 while labouring on a southwestern Ontario farm last month, said her husband was a “good and caring person.”
“He was a man of values. He was humble, responsible, empathetic, generous, a person full of patience and trust in others,” said Juana Vazquez.
It’s the first time she’s provided information about her husband to Canadian media since Eugenio-Romero died May 30 in the Windsor-Essex region.
The statement to CBC News was provided by Santiago Escobar, who is representing the family and is also a national representative for United Food and Commercial Workers Canada.
He said Eugenio-Romero’s body is still in Canada.
“He was a good and caring person. Very responsible at work and at home. Very respectful and loved by people in his hometown in Puebla State,” said Vazquez. “He was always honest, altruistic and above all, optimistic in various situations.”
The couple have been married for three years and did not have any children.
Vazquez said there was a large tribute for Romero in his hometown of Santa Inés Borbolla, in central Mexico about two weeks ago.
She said many local residents attended the memorial, despite fears of COVID-19. She called it “a beautiful farewell organized by the people.”
‘A man of values’
According to Vazquez, her husband was from an “economically humble town” and when he heard about the temporary foreign workers program in Canada, he didn’t think twice about it.
Vazquez said Eugenio-Romero wanted to support his family for a better future.
Eugenio-Romero was working at Woodside Greenhouses Inc. Pepper farm in Kingsville, Ont.
As of Friday, the company has reported five cases of COVID-19 to the province’s Workplace Safety and Insurance Board.
Eugenio-Romero was the first migrant worker in Ontario to die of COVID-19 where the virus has spread to other southwestern farms.
A second migrant worker, Rogelio Muñoz Santos, died June 5 from COVID-19. He was 24 years old.
According to Escobar, Romero’s body will be buried once returned to Mexico.