AURORA, Colo. (CBS4) – Kevin Lyster talks to his only son every day, even though Cody Lyster died of COVID-19 complications nearly a year ago.

Lyster family

CBS4’s Brian Maass interviews Kevin and Lea Ann Lyster. (credit: CBS)

“I tell him I love him, I tell him I miss him, I tell him I hope he is proud of what we have done,” said Lyster.

He and his wife Lea Ann agreed recently to talk about their son, who died in April 2020.

Cody Lyster

(credit: Lyster Family)

“It’s still good days and bad days,” said Lyster. “The tears still come.”

When he died at age 21, Cody Lyster became one of the youngest COVID-related deaths in Colorado.

His father was the first to contract the virus and was hospitalized, but now says he initially thought the pandemic was overblown.

“I’ll say it. I was a denier. Like a lot of people, we didn’t know what was coming,” said Lyster. “I didn’t believe at the time this was going to be a big deal. There are people who say ‘It’s not going to affect me.’ I said that a year ago.”

Now, the Lysters urge others to continue wearing masks and take other precautions to prevent the virus from spreading.

“He just left such a huge hole,” said his mother, Lea Ann.

RELATED: Coronavirus Claims Life Of Colorado Mesa University Student Cody Lyster

She said the family has made it through the past year thanks to a good support group of family, friends and coworkers. But the tears still come quickly, and in abundance, as she remembers her only son.

“You grieve every day,” she says.

Cody Lyster

(credit: CBS)

They remember a son who loved baseball, loved helping others, loved his grandmother and was always willing to help young children try to reach their goals. Cody was looking forward to following his father’s footsteps into a career in law enforcement.

“He was a great kid. It’s a huge loss to us and the community as a whole,” said Kevin.

In February, Kevin Lyster said he was cleaning out a room in his home when he found an old Father’s Day card from his son.

“Just always remember I love you and am glad to call you my father,” wrote Cody. He signed it from “Your favorite and only son.”

Brian Maass