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Anthony Rosario: Employee Of The Month

Jessica Flores, Madeleine Scinto |
November 3, 2009 | 8:28 p.m. PST

Anthony Rosario was the kind of guy who enjoyed helping people in the quietest ways. Never looking for praise or recognition. He just did it anyway.

At McDonald's he saw a mother trying to split a few meals among all her children. He overheard the mother explain to her still-hungry kids she didn't have enough money to buy more. So what did Anthony do? He quietly slipped $5 to the eldest, a 13-year-old boy. "Go get yourselves something," he said.

Another time he took a walk with his sibling when a hub cap flew off a car and hit his sister's leg. Their brother laughed. But not Anthony. He hoisted his little sister on his back and carried her the three miles home.

That was Anthony: a helper, a mender, someone who was ready to fix a problem at hand.

At his funeral friends and family filled a large cardboard poster with different memories, many of which related to how he had helped them. One friend wrote about the first time she met Anthony. She cried by herself as fellow high school students passed her in the halls, simply ignoring her. But not Anthony. He knelt down and comforted her.

They didn't know each other but that didn't matter. Because that was Anthony.

When people needed their car fixed, he fixed it. He loved cars and motorcycles and spent the last two years selling cars at North Hollywood Toyota. When people needed a haircut, he cut it. When his mother needed something from the grocery store, he bought it. And he never complained.

Anthony died July 30, 2009 of swine flu at age 28, a week before his August birthday. His mother says he had asthma as a child, but was healthy before he was admitted to the Providence Holy Cross Medical Center.  He stayed in the hospital three weeks after being admitted with 103-degree temperature.  The hospital struggled to keep his temperature down and could not figure out exactly what ailed him.  While doctors tested him for a series of different sicknesses, including swine flu, they also gave him a long treatment of antibiotics.  The death certificate says he died of adult respiratory distress syndrome and H1N1 virus. 

After his death Anthony's brother found a poem saved on Anthony's computer. The family reprinted the poem on key chains and T-shirts, which they wore for the funeral. The poem seemed to describe the way he lived his life, "The good you do today, will often be forgotten.  Do good anyway.  Give the best you have, and it will never be enough.  Give your best anyway."

More than 50 people have died of swine flu in Los Angeles County. We feature some of them here. Click below to read their stories.
Plus Daniel Hernandez and
Olivia Cater

Visit the summary page for a complete collection of our swine flu stories.

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