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Coronavirus COVID-19 Local News

New Braunfels Man Dies of COVID-19

This scanning electron microscope image shows SARS-CoV-2 (orange)—also known as 2019-nCoV, the virus that causes COVID-19—isolated from a patient in the U.S., emerging from the surface of cells (green) cultured in the lab. Credit: National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases-RML

Comal County on Thursday, March 26, confirmed its first death from COVID-19, a 44-year-old New Braunfels man.

Adolph “T.J.” Mendez, described as perfectly healthy by family members, died Thursday afternoon at Ascension Seton Medical Center in Austin, where he had been treated.

His case had already been reported to the county and was included among its current total of eight confirmed cases. As of Thursday afternoon, three patients have recovered.

“Our hearts, as well as our thoughts and our prayers, go out to this man’s family and friends,” said Comal County Judge Sherman Krause. “This tragic news emphasizes the need for all of us to make sure we are taking every effort to maintain social distancing measures and protecting ourselves, our loved ones and the most vulnerable among us from contracting COVID-19.”

Wife Angela Mendez told the New Braunfels Herald Zeitung that Mendez’ death from COVID-19 could happen to anyone.

“You hear that the people who die are older or have previous health conditions but he was neither and the virus took him down hard,” she said. “It can happen to anyone, it’s not just a story that happens to people across the world. It’s here and it’s real and it can kill anyone, just like it did my husband.”

At Commissioners Court on Thursday morning, Office of Public Health Director Cheryl Fraser said the county has received results of 111 tests from private and state labs. Eight of those were positive, 69 were negative, and 34 test results were still pending.

Additional COVID-19 information

Krause has not issued a shelter-in-place order like New Braunfels.

Information about COVID-19, as well as coronavirus-related county office closures and restrictions, is available at www.comalcountytx.com/covid19.

Residents with questions or concerns about the novel coronavirus can call the county’s dedicated COVID-19 hotline, 830-221-1120, between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

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