Tributes are pouring in Thursday after the husband of a viral Arizona grandmother died of coronavirus.
Wanda Dench, who has since recovered from COVID-19, gained viral fame in 2016 after mistakenly inviting a stranger to Thanksgiving Dinner. The news of Lonnie Dench’s death was shared on social media by that Thanksgiving stranger turned family friend, Jamal Hinton.
On April 2, Hinton posted photos of himself with Lonnie and Wanda on Twitter, sharing their diagnosis. Early Thursday, he revealed Lonnie passed away on Sunday, April 5.
“Wanda told me all the love and support he was receiving put a huge smile on his face so I thank every single one of you guys for that,” he tweeted. “Also for those asking Wanda is not sick.”
“RIP Lonnie” was the number one trending topic in the world on Twitter at the time of this posting. We compiled some of the reactions to his passing below.
As some of you may have already found out tonight Lonnie did not make it... he passed away Sunday morning😔 but Wanda told me all the love and support he was receiving put a huge smile on his face so I thank every single one of you guys for that!🙏🏽❤️ https://t.co/tNvals0FMh— Jamal Hinton (@Jamalhinton12) April 9, 2020
Everyone on Twitter loves you guys. RIP Lonnie https://t.co/72fw6wYbX3— hetrosexual rigamarole (@labubbakeith) April 9, 2020
RIP Lonnie. That's so sad. 😭— A.C.E Call📌 | San & Mingi Xoxo (@MingiXoxo) April 9, 2020
For those of you who don't know, Wanda texted the wrong number 4 years ago when inviting her grandkids to Thanksgiving. Jamal got the text and responded and Wanda invited him anyways even though he wasn't family. + https://t.co/ICv8sbQC8L
RIP Lonnie. Thanksgiving won’t be the same without you. pic.twitter.com/GcSqvllGIi— Leroy (@ThatTrumpetGuy) April 9, 2020
this fucking destroyed me rest peacefully lonnie https://t.co/Tf8n71hWCZ— bea (@beamiller) April 9, 2020
RIP Lonnie man 😞 🕊 🙏🏼 I’ve been following this story since 2016 this sucks to hear 😔 https://t.co/MCbaAjSd2M— Sosa (@Alex360K) April 9, 2020
This is actually so fucking sad bro. This started off Wanda texting the wrong number & they became a family. My heart hurts man. RIP Lonnie 🥺🥺🥺💔 https://t.co/40hR5Ini8X— Mike Lowrey (@Erick_Montoya69) April 9, 2020
man... 2020 cant get any worse. RIP Lonnie 😪 pic.twitter.com/Nv0vZJVhZH— tina :) (@txnacastro) April 9, 2020
Wow. Corona really took Lonnie.— Rushé (@Rushe_C) April 9, 2020
Thanksgiving is going to be so weird this year. pic.twitter.com/0HhamozWEL
I’m so sorry Jamal. I watched you guys bond from the first time you met, and felt like they invited us all to dinner. Please send my love, light. Affirming peace, strength. #Lonnie 💛 https://t.co/OYQ1RBgNSs— Noree Victoria (@NoreeVictoria) April 9, 2020