Dimitry Stuzhuk, an Instagram fitness influencer with over 1.1 million followers, recently passed away after a battle with the complications of COVID-19. The 33-year-old social media star’s ex-wife Sofia Stuzhuk announced her death on Saturday in a heartbreaking Instagram post. Stuzhuk insisted the coronavirus was a hoax and didn’t need to be taken seriously, but he tested positive for the virus after a recent trip to Turkey.
“I came to you as a little 19-year-old Sonechka and left Sofia Stuzhuk as an adult and independent,” Sofia wrote in Russian on Instagram, along with photos with the ex-couple’s three children. “Yes, we didn’t have a good relationship. Yes, there were a lot of problems. But this relationship has given us so much.”
Stuzhuk’s latest Instagram post was posted on Wednesday and included two photos of a hospital in his native Ukraine. After returning from Turkey, he told his followers that he believed COVID-19 should be taken seriously. “I want to share how I got sick and warn everyone,” he wrote in an Instagram post, he reports The sun. “I was one who thought Covid didn’t exist … Until I got sick,” he continued. “COVID-19 IS NOT A SHORT-LIFE DISEASE! And it’s heavy.”
After eight days in a hospital in Kiev, Ukraine, he was allowed to leave. This week, however, he was hospitalized. Sofia said she was in “serious condition” and “unconscious” when she was hospitalized. She had “problems with her cardiovascular system” and her heart “couldn’t take it,” wrote Sofia. Doctors recovered his heart, but his condition was “extremely serious” just before he died. On Friday he announced Stuzhuk’s death. “Dima is no longer with us,” he wrote. “His heart could not hold.”
Stuzhuk and Sofia separated six months ago but were on better terms before her death. They are parents of three children, David, Lola and Olivia, and their youngest is nine months old.
There are 39.5 million coronavirus cases worldwide as of Saturday, according to Johns Hopkins University. The global death toll reached 1.1 million, with more than 219,000 deaths reported in the United States alone. Turkey, where Stuzhuk said he contracted the virus, has over 345,000 confirmed cases and over 9,200 deaths.