3 members of family die from coronavirus, 4 more in NJ hospital
Two more members of the same family have died from COVID-19, both within hours of each other. In all, three members of the family have died and another three remain in critical care.
Rita Fusco-Jackson, 55, of Freehold Township died on Saturday while being treated at CentraState Medical Center, according to her church Co-Cathedral of St. Robert Bellarmine.
Attorney Roseann Paradiso-Fodera, who is acting as a family spokesperson, told the New York Times that Rita's brother, Carmine Fusco of Bath, Pennsylvania and their mother, Grace Fusco, 73, died on Wednesday,
Carmine Fusco was Pennsylvania’s first reported death related to the novel coronavirus.
Grace Fusco was breathing with help from a ventilator, and was unaware of the deaths of her two oldest children, Paradiso-Fodera told the Times.
Four other members of the family are at CentraState Medical Center in Freehold — three of them in critical care — and 20 other members of the same family are quarantined, Paradiso-Fodera told the Times.
Monmouth County had 32 known reported cases of coronavirus as of Wednesday, according to the state Department of Health. The state has not yet published figures for Thursday. As of that point, there were 276 known cases statewide, and four deaths.
State Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli said during a media briefing on Sunday that Fusco-Jackson's brother had been friends with John Brennan, 69, of Little Ferry, who on March 10 became the first patient to die from coronavirus in New Jersey. She was exposed to the virus at a family gathering that included Brennan.
Paradiso-Fodera told the Times that the gathering was a "routine family dinner" on a Tuesday night.
Members of the Fusco family trained or rode horses at Freehold Raceway, Paradiso-Fodera told the Times. Yonkers Raceway said in a statement Brennan worked for the Standardbred Owners Association based at Yonkers Raceway.
A GoFundMe page was created by Allen Zak to help the family with medical expenses, funeral expenses, and future hardship.
"This is a family that always cared and was there for others and now they need us to be there for them," Zak wrote.
Contact reporter Dan Alexander at Dan.Alexander@townsquaremedia.com or via Twitter @DanAlexanderNJ
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