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Oct 26, 2020

The Short Life of Arturo Godoy Jr.

Arturo Godoy Jr.

Six-year-old Arturo Godoy Junior was a fighter; he battled a kidney condition that placed him at a higher risk when he contracted the novel coronavirus. Those who knew the young child among family and classmates attest to his good nature and eagerness to learn and live. In his short life, he wrote and recited poetry. News Five’s Hipolito Novelo looks at his school life.


Arturo Godoy Jr., Deceased

“My Belizean people wake up, stand up. It’s a brand new day. This is Belize, our nation. The power is in our hands to build it strong. Let’s unite and stand as one in harmony. Our Belize. Our Paradise. Our land of the Free.”


Hipolito Novel, Reporting

No one could truly understand the pain and hurt that six year old Arturo Godoy was experiencing behind this smile. And behind that smile was a little fighter; Arturo for two years was battling a disease and later began experiencing problems with his kidney.

Arturo Godoy Sr., Father of Deceased

“He has celiac disease, celiac right. It is something that goes through the blood and take out little scars and right now. But right now, so they told me, that it was his kidney, that is why he was getting swell.”


Arturo became a little fighter two years ago when his health began deteriorating, but he would not give up. He wanted to be a normal little boy who went to a normal school.


Arturo Godoy Sr.

Arturo Godoy Sr.

“I don’t have any bad memory of him. He doesn’t give me any trouble. If I tell him, hijo sit down right here he will sit down until tell him to move from there. But daddy you told me to sit.  I know, and I tell him to go do something else. Then he will stand up and he will go walk and then find something to do, grab his phone and go in his room. But my baby, if you go to La Inmaculada School, if you ask him how was him. They will explain to you that this little boy never give trouble.”


We went to La Inmaculada Primary School where Arturo was in Infant two before transferring to Louisiana Government School, closer to his home.


Lenny Umana

Lenny Umana, Principal, La Inmaculada RC School

“Arturo had been with us since he entered pre-school. Just this September, his mom, on September seventh I believe was trying to find a way out to get Arturo to school but closer to home. I think he chose to be attending Louisiana Government School. So that the child go from home to school at a very short distance. Arturo would come to school and he would participate in everything that the school did. In fact you saw the last picture that he had of our cultural day. He came as a Mestizo. So whenever he came to school he did what he possible cold as a child and that is what I explained to some of my teachers. We gave to that child the childhood and experiences that he needed at the right time. Unfortunately Arturo could not come to school every day because of his illness. And the sadness it brings that he has been battling for his survival from very young. And if it is that COVID that he had it just saddens us that this is what took his life when he was a fighter.”


And even in sickness, Arturo kept going; doing his work at home, paper based learning to keep up with his class. He recently placed second in a poem competition.


Arturo Godoy Sr.

“Although he was sick, he got video right now going on, when he said his poem. My babe talks and he was swelling. My baby said his poem, my baby did his work. He feels alright, he feels good. That is why I try to imagine how this happened like that.”


And even now, the family’s challenges continue as they fight to lay Arturo to rest.


Arturo Godoy Sr.

“They don’t want to give us his body. They want us to pay two thousand two hundred and fifteen dollars. The undertaker, he will just go find my baby and bring it because he says that is the law. That nobody else could find my baby.”


Hipolito Novelo

“Do you have the money to pay it?”


Arturo Godoy Sr.

“I don’t have any money for that. I am not working for two months.”


Reporting for News Five, I am Hipolito Novelo.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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