Gone too soon: Friends remember the life and legacy of Louvenia Henderson, Erie County’s 6th COVID-19 victim

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(WIVB)-When Melodie Baker found out that her friend of nearly 20 years Louvenia Henderson died after testing positive for COVID-19, she was shocked. Henderson was only 43-years- old.

She says her friend was young and healthy, and it proved to her that anyone could fall victim to this disease.

“I’ll miss her smile and her gentle spirit, there was never a single person she pushed away. She was just too young, she was so healthy and happy, and vibrant that she was the last person we would think would succumb to this,” Baker said.

Louvenia, known as Lou Lou, died earlier this week from COVID- 19, making her the sixth and youngest person in Erie County to die from the illness.

Baker says the two met at Midtown Bible Church in Buffalo and their friendship formed immediately.

She was just so much fun. She had an incredibly creative mind. She had a big heart. People know her as being the life of the party.” 

But friends and family learned that their loved one’s life would be cut much too short.

“It was unbelievable. It’s still unreal, There are times when I’m laughing and want to pick up the phone these last couple of days and tell Lou Lou about a funny story and realize she’s not here anymore at 43 you know you don’t plan to die,” Barker said.

“We had just a magnificent great time with her and she was just a really fun-loving kind person,” said Derek Baker, a friend of Henderson’s and Melodie’s Husband.

The Baker’s say they never expected this to happen to someone so close to them and that it’s a reminder not to take precautions against catching coronavirus lightly.

“Like most people, I did believe it was an older people situation at that time. I’m going to be fine, we go back and forth and to and fro but when we found out it was actually Lou Lou it took on a whole other situation at that time, and it became very very real to me,” Derek said.

“I want her legacy to live on. I don’t want her to be another number. I want people to realize that people are dying our loved ones, our sisters, our best friends. Mothers and young people. So I really want people to take this seriously, ” Melodie said.

Because Henderson was so young and this was so unexpected, Melodie says the family did not set aside money for a funeral. If anyone in the community would like to help, they have created a GoFundMe page to help with expenses.

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