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A college professor in Argentina collapsed and died with COVID-19 symptoms while teaching a virtual class

  • A college professor in Argentina was experiencing COVID-19 symptoms during a virtual class and died while her students tried to get help.
  • Paola De Simone, 46, had previously tweeted that her coronavirus symptoms had persisted for weeks. 
  • On Wednesday, the professor was teaching a class when her 40 students watched her have trouble breathing. 
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Universidad Argentina de la Empresa professor Paola De Simone was teaching a virtual class on Wednesday when she started struggling to breathe. 

Watching on video, her 40 students became concerned. They asked for her address so they could call for help, but she never responded.

De Simone, who had written on Twitter that she had suffered from coronavirus symptoms for weeks, collapsed and died during the class, a local newspaper, Clarin, reported.

The university released a brief statement on the 46-year-old professor's death. 

"Paola was a passionate and dedicated teacher, and a great person, with more fifteen years of experience at UADE," the statement said in Spanish. 

More than 488,000 people have tested positive for the coronavirus in Argentina. There have been at least 10,129 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University.

Ana Breccia, one of the students in De Simone's class, told The Washington Post, that she and her classmates stayed on the video call until her professor's husband arrived. 

Other students and friends told the Post that the professor was dedicated, kind, and passionate. 

They were not surprised she continued to teach even while sick from COVID-19.

"This was not a surprise, I totally portray Paola deciding, 'I can totally do this, my students need me,'" Silvina Sterin Pensel, an Argentine journalist in New York, told The Post about her longtime friend.

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