Mate Babic meant the world to his sons.
The 37-year-old Downer man died last week after contracting influenza B.
A doting father, Mate and his eldest, Marko, regularly played video games together.
The seven-year-old now stuffs his father's jumper and tracksuit pants with a pillow, and sits it up next to him on the couch, with a controller on the lap, so he can still play with "daddy".
"[Marko] is not doing so well, he's struggling," Mate's wife Carla Babic said.
Her husband died on July 12. He was a hard-working father of three who was going through a health kick before he caught the virus. He stopped drinking alcohol, ate fruits and salad, and even signed up to a gym.
"He was healthy ... he was in the best shape and the fittest I'd seen him in a long time," Mrs Babic said.
His untimely death has left her heartbroken. Mrs Babic said their family is "absolutely devastated".
"I never in my wildest dreams thought that I'd be telling people I'm a widow, at 37," she said.
Mr Babic was a big fan of the Canberra Raiders and the Brooklyn Nets. He had a "big personality" and loved making people laugh.
She broke down when she described him as a "very involved" and "fun-loving" father.
"Now my kids won't have a male role model in their lives anymore," she said.
Mr Babic had had a cough for a few days, but "totally crashed" on Saturday, July 8. His wife and sons had fallen sick at the beginning of the school holidays. He was the last to fall ill.
Mrs Babic said her husband had been at his parents' since Saturday. She said he did not want to go to the hospital because of previous experiences with long wait times.
On Tuesday, Mr Babic was bedridden and had trouble talking. When he told his wife he wasn't doing well, she arranged a telehealth appointment for him.
Mrs Babic said the doctor was "apprehensive" about prescribing medication and told her husband he needed to come in person. She then booked him a midday consult for the following day.
In the early hours of Wednesday, Mr Babic woke up and drew a bath to soothe his aches. The water ran as he laid down to rest.
Soon, the neighbours were banging on his parents' door. Their apartment had flooded and they discovered their son had died.
The coroner's report revealed he died of bacterial pneumonia.
Mr and Mrs Babic had been getting their flu shots every year until this year.
She now feels her husband should've gone to the hospital.
"He probably just kept thinking 'Tomorrow is going to be a better day'," she said.
"It's not worth waiting and hoping when it can so quickly turn catastrophic.
"You keep replaying in your head - what if he would have just gone to the doctor, what if he had just had the flu vaccine?"
The Babic family now finds themselves in financial peril.
Mr Babic worked for Canberra Health Services doing shiftwork and had not collected much superannuation. He wanted to get life insurance but had been too busy to get around to it.
He also spent every free moment building his family's home as well as renovating his parents'.
"He built it to set us up for the future. It's his legacy and now we might have to potentially sell it," Mrs Babic said.
She added the cost of living had made their situation harder and she was struggling to repay their mortgage.
"We weren't prepared enough for this," she said.
"All for something that could have just been so easily prevented."
Friends of the Babics have now started a GoFundMe page to raise funds in hopes of supporting the family through this challenging time.
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