Joe Luna, a Los Angeles-based comedian better known by his stage name Joe El Cholo, has died of complications from COVID-19 just days after announcing his diagnosis. Luna announced on Instagram on November 21 that he was battling coronavirus. He posted a video the following day telling his fans he would be documenting his experience with the virus, and another on November 23 after being admitted to the hospital. Fox Los Angeles reported that he’d died in the hospital the same day.
In his 35-minute video on November 22, Luna stated, “Let me tell you man, when I would hear people talk about what COVID did to them, I always thought to myself, man, you know what, I doubted it was that bad. But no, dude, I’ll tell you guys right now I’ve been put in a fight. I’ve been fighting for my life for the last, you know, week or so, man. This COVID s*** is no joke.”
The 38-year-old comedian did have prior health issues, indicating in his video that he had contracted pneumonia in addition to being diabetic and a double amputee.
Luna Said Others in His Family Also Tested Positive for the Virus & He Was Hospitalized When His Condition Worsened
In his first video, Luna said he had been released from the hospital but was experiencing COVID-19 symptoms like chest pain, and said: “I’m dealing with a lot, guys, right now.” He added, “I’m going to show you guys my journey through my good and bad times because it’s all about showing my people out there, if you think that COVID is a joke, If you think this won’t be you … then trust me; it hits everybody differently.”
He said his girlfriend and his kids also tested positive for the virus, which he said wasn’t from performing at shows but from a close contact. His son Jose Talavera said, “It was like his lungs were hurting more than we all felt before. All of us were coughing and sneezing,” Fox Los Angeles reported.
Luna’s condition took a turn for the worse and he was admitted to Victor Valley Global Medical Center, where he died on November 23. That day he’d posted a video showing the condition of the room he was staying in, saying, “The floor is disgusting” and showing a container of urine on the counter he said wasn’t his.
The comedian, who was getting supplemental oxygen during the video, said he’d been brought to the hospital after his girlfriend had difficulty waking him up.
Luna’s Family Has Announced Plans for His Funeral & Set Up a GoFundMe to Help Cover Expenses
Luna was known for performing at comedy clubs like The Ice House in Pasadena and The Improv Theatre in Hollywood, Fox Los Angeles reported. His Instagram page indicates that he was born on July 23, 1982, in East LA and raised in both East LA and Fontana.
A GoFundMe was set up to help raise money for funeral expenses for the comedian. It states, “We are currently all morning him because not only was he a great son, dad, hubby but also a best friend to many of us. He faught hard after losing both legs to stay ok. He faught hard with the everyday pain. He was my comedian super hero even when he was hurting he managed to put a smile in our face.”
The page also indicates that a service will take place on Saturday, December 5, at the Continental Funeral Home.