Caleb Wallace, a Texas man who helped organize the “Freedom Rally” and other prominent protests against pandemic restrictions, has died from COVID-19. He was 30.
His wife, Jessica Wallace, who is pregnant with the couple’s fourth child, announced his death on their family’s GoFundMe page Saturday.
“Caleb has peacefully passed on,” she wrote. “He will forever live in our hearts and minds.”
Wallace battled the virus for weeks in the ICU, according to the San Angelo Standard-Times. He had been “unconscious, ventilated and heavily sedated” since Aug. 8. His wife said that he initially began experiencing symptoms on July 26 and wrote on the GoFundMe page that he had been in the hospital since July 30.
Jessica told the Standard-Times that her husband initially refused to be tested for COVID and instead turned to unproven home remedies to fight the virus, including high doses of Vitamin C, zinc, aspirin and Ivermectin — a parasitic worm treatment intended for animals that is not FDA-approved.
The administration has urged people not to use it to treat COVID-19, writing that it is not an anti-viral medicine and that taking large doses “is dangerous and can cause serious harm.”
“He was so hard-headed,” Jessica Wallace told the Standard-Times. “He didn’t want to see a doctor, because he didn’t want to be part of the statistics with COVID tests.”
Caleb Wallace had been a vocal opponent to pandemic restrictions and mandates, appearing in interviews criticizing school closures and mask policies as well as organizing a July 4 “Freedom Rally” last year to protest government restrictions. He also founded “The San Angelo Freedom Defenders,” a group that hosted a separate rally last year to “end COVID tyranny.”
“Show me the science that masks work,” he wrote on the City of San Angelo’s official Facebook in December 2020. “Show me the evidence that school closures work. Show me the evidence that lock-downs work.”
For Jessica, whose views on masks differed from her husband’s, Caleb’s diagnosis led to the realization that the virus “does not discriminate.”
“I’m from the border town of Del Rio, and my views are less conservative,” she told the Standard-Times. “I’m not a liberal. I stand somewhere in the middle…Caleb would tell me, ‘You know masks aren’t going to save you,’ but he understood I wanted to wear them. It gives me comfort to know that maybe, just maybe, I’m either protecting someone or avoiding it myself.”
She also added that “whether he was a hardcore conservative or not, he was an amazing man.”