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First Alabama coronavirus death confirmed in Jackson County

The Jackson County Commission announced late Wednesday afternoon that Alabama’s first COVID-19 death was one of their part-time county employees.

Alabama Governor Kay Ivey confirmed Wednesday night that the recently passed individual was an Alabama resident whose death resulted from contracting coronavirus.

The Jackson County employee was one of only two Jackson County citizens to test positive for the virus, as of Wednesday, March 25.

As of 8:50 p.m on Wednesday, Alabama had 386 confirmed cases of the coronavirus.

The letter from Jackson County Commission Charman Tim Guffey, in full (paragraph breaks inserted by Yellowhammer News), as follows:

The Jackson County Commission and the employees of the County offer the family of one of our part-time employees its heartfelt sympathy in the passing of their loved one.

The Alabama Public Health Department has confirmed that the employee passed away after having contracted the COVID 19 virus. From the date the part time employee last worked, the expected incubation period has expired.

The employee worked in a department at the Jackson County Courthouse that did not require regular contact with the public. All County employees who worked in the same department have been notified and none of them have reported any symptoms associated with the COVID 19 virus.

The work area where the employee worked will be fully sanitized and will be checked thoroughly before any employees are allowed to return to work when the Courthouse opens again not earlier than April 6, 2020. We will continue to monitor the situation to protect the health of all County employees and the public.

Governor Kay Ivey issued a statement alongside the confirmation on Wednesday evening, saying:

It is with profound sadness that I confirm that one of our citizens has passed away from the COVID-19 virus. I extend my prayers and deepest sympathies to the family and loved ones during these extraordinary circumstances. I continue to urge everyone that this virus is real, it is deadly, and we should continue to maintain social-distancing as much as possible. Together, we will overcome these challenges and difficult days.

I appreciate the diligence of the Alabama Department of Public Health for thoroughly investigating this case, which unfortunately was indeed a Coronavirus-related death.

RELATED: Ainsworth criticizes Alabama’s coronavirus prep — ‘Not taking a realistic view of the numbers or adequately preparing for what awaits us’

Henry Thornton is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can contact him by email: henry@new-yhn.local or on Twitter @HenryThornton95.

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