With the Coronavirus spreading across the world, people are taking extra measures and precautions in order to avoid getting the disease. As of April 19, 2020 (the deadline for this article), there has been about 2,407,339 cases and 165,069 deaths worldwide so far. No one, including public figures, is immune from getting and/or dying from the disease.
Many public figures around the world have passed away from The Coronavirus and/or COVID-19 Complications. These public figures range from actors, singers, professional athletes, politicians and/or their spouses, royal family members, etc. The deaths of family members of public figures that gained significant media coverage are also included in this article.
Listed below are 12 Notable Public Figures Who Have Died From The Coronavirus and COVID-19 Complications:
1. Floyd Cardoz:
The Indian-born American chef passed away from coronavirus complications on March 25, 2020, in New Jersey at the age of 59. A four-time James Beard Award nominee and the author of two cookbooks, Cardoz also gained fame as the Season 3 winner of Top Chef Masters.
Cardoz, who felt ill, tested positive for the coronavirus and was hospitalized for a week after traveling from Mumbai to New York through Frankfurt on March 8, according to CBC News.
2. Princess María Teresa of Bourbon-Parma:
The French-Spanish political activist and academic was a member of the House of Bourbon-Parma, a cadet branch of the Spanish royal family. Princess María Teresa’s died in Paris at the age of 86 on March 26. She is the first member of a royal family to die due to COVID-19 complications.
3. Hal Willner:
The longtime sketch music producer for Saturday Night Live (SNL) died of health complications related to the coronavirus on April 7 at his home on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. Willner’s death came one day after he celebrated his 64th birthday.
A tribute to Willner was included on the April 11, 2020 episode of SNL, which was the show’s first episode after it took a hiatus on March 16 in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The tribute (see the video below) featured current and former cast members of SNL sharing stories about him and singing Lou Reed’s “Perfect Day”.
4. Julie Bennett:
The veteran voice actress, who was best known for voicing Cindy Bear on The Yogi Bear Show (1961-1962), passed away due to coronavirus complications on March 31, 2020. She was 88-years-old.
5. Mark Blum:
The actor, who was a veteran on television, film, and theater, passed away from complications of the coronavirus in New York City on March 25. At the time of his death, he was a month and a half away from his 70th birthday.
Blum was best known for starring opposite Madonna in the 1985 film Desperately Seeking Susan. Both Madonna and Rosanna Arquette (who also starred in the iconic film with Blum and Madonna), paid tribute to their deceased co-star on social media.
6. Lee Fierro:
As reported by Variety, the actress and theater promoter died of complications from the coronavirus on April 5. She was 91-years-old and had been living in an assisted care facility in Canton, Ohio when she died. Fierro is best known for playing Mrs. Kintner, the mother that slapped Chief Brody (played by Roy Scheider) across the face in the 1975 film Jaws.
7. Liang Wudong:
Many might not know who Liang Wudong is, but the reason why he’s included in this article is that he was the first known doctor to die from the 2019–20 coronavirus pandemic due to nosocomial infection, an infection that is acquired in a hospital or other healthcare facility. Liang died at the age of 60 in Wuhan, China, where the coronavirus believed to have originated from.
The deceased doctor was the director of the Department of Otorhinolaryngology of Hubei Province Integrated Traditional Chinese and Western Medicine Hospital (also known as the Xinhua Hospital).
8. Jacqueline Towns:
The mother (on the left) of NBA All-Star and Minnesota Timberwolves Star Karl-Anthony Towns (on the right) passed away at the age of 58 due to complications the coronavirus on April 13th. The NBA Star made his mother’s struggle with the coronavirus public in an emotional video released on his Instagram page on March 24. In the video, Karl-Anthony announced that his mother had been put on a ventilator in a medically induced coma. His father, Karl Sr., also tested positive for the coronavirus and has since recovered.
9. Norman Hunter:
The former English Centre Back was admitted into the hospital on April 10 after contracting the coronavirus and passed away seven days later. He was 76-years-old. Leeds United, the football club that Hunter played the majority of his career said in a statement that, “[his death] left a huge hole in the Leeds United family, his legacy will never be forgotten and our thoughts are with Norman’s family and friends at this very difficult time.”
The Leeds United legend was also a member of the England squad that won the 1966 FIFA World Cup. Hunter’s death came five days after Peter Bonetti, a backup goalie and Hunter’s teammate on England’s 1966 World Cup-winning squad, died from a long term illness on April 12.
10. Maria Mercader:
The journalist and news producer, who worked at CBS News for over 3 decades, died after testing positive for coronavirus on March 29 in a New York City hospital. She was 54-years-old.
11. Joachim Yhombi-Opango:
The former President and Prime Minister of the Republic of the Congo died on March 30 from the coronavirus at the American Hospital of Paris in Neuilly-sur-Seine, France. He was 81-years-old. The Congolese politician’s death was first confirmed in a phone call with Agence France-Presse by his son Jean-Jacques Yhombi Opango.
12. Lucia Bosè:
The Italian Actress and former Miss Italia died of pneumonia after contracting the coronavirus on March 23. Bosè, the winner of Miss Italia 1947, was 89-years-old. Her death was announced by her son Gabriel Bosé, a famous Spanish musician, on Twitter that same day.
Besides the 12 people listed above, have you heard of any other notable public figures who died from the Coronavirus and COVID-19 Complications recently? If so, state the names of the recently deceased in the comments section.
I’m sending my thoughts and prayers to anyone who had a family member or friend succumb to the coronavirus.
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I am currently a senior at The University of Miami. I will graduate in December 2021 with a major in Journalism and minor in Sports Administration.