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Northern Arapaho member dies of coronavirus, is state's 27th death from virus
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Northern Arapaho member dies of coronavirus, is state's 27th death from virus

COVID-19

This 2020 electron microscope made available by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention image shows the spherical coronavirus particles from the first U.S. case of COVID-19.

Another member of the Northern Arapaho Tribe has died of the novel coronavirus, a spokesman for the tribe announced Monday.

The woman was described in a news release as a “well-respected and loved elder who committed her life to our Creator. She was a wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and friend who exemplified that love, comfort, peace, and caring to all of our people. She was very devoted to our Creator and her family.”

She is the state’s 27th fatality from the disease and among 11 deaths from the Northern Arapaho, who account for more than a third of the fatalities in Wyoming. The 11 Fremont County residents who have died after contracting the virus are the most in the state.

“This virus has taken so much from us, and every death leaves a hole in our Tribe that cannot be filled,” Lee Spoonhunter, the chairman of the tribe’s Business Council, said in a statement. “On behalf of the entire Business Council, we grieve for the victim and pray that our Creator help ease the pain of her family and friends.”

The tribe has a shelter-in-place order in effect. It’s the only such order in the state.

Fremont County and the tribe in particular have been hit hard by the virus. As of Monday, 418 residents of the county have contracted the virus, plus 57 others who likely have the disease. A total of 366 people have recovered in Fremont County.

Statewide, 2,364 people have contracted the virus since it first emerged in Wyoming in mid-March. An additional 484 people have developed coronavirus-like symptoms after coming in close contact with a laboratory-confirmed patient. In all, 2,214 patients have recovered.

Washakie County has had five residents die of the virus. Three deaths have come from Laramie County, and two have come from Sweetwater County. Campbell, Carbon, Johnson, Natrona, Teton and Uinta counties have each lost one patient to the virus.

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Education and Health Reporter

Seth Klamann joined the Star-Tribune in 2016 and covers education and health. A 2015 graduate of the University of Missouri and proud Kansas City native, Seth worked for newspapers in Milwaukee and Omaha before coming to Casper.

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