Coronavirus Chicago: 2nd firefighter, water department employee among city's latest COVID-19 victims

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Thursday, April 16, 2020
2nd Chicago firefighter dies from coronavirus
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A second Chicago firefighter died of COVID-19, the city said Wednesday. A city worker in the Water Department also died from the virus.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- A second Chicago firefighter has died from coronavirus, the Chicago Fire Department announced Wednesday.

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Firefighter Edward Singleton, 55, died Tuesday night, Chicago Fire spokesman Larry Langford said. Singleton was assigned to Midway Airport and joined the department in 1987.

Singleton leaves behind a wife and two adult children.

The fire commissioner said, in part, "In the midst of our mourning the loss of yet another one of our brothers, CFD members must diligently follow guideline and protocols to ensure the safety of themselves, the public they serve, and their families."

Last Monday, a funeral was held for Mario Araujo, who was the first Chicago firefighter to die from COVID-19 complications. Araujo, 49, served in the city's Rogers Park neighborhood as well as serving part-time in the Rosemont Fire Department.

WATCH: Chicago water department worker dies of COVID-19

There was a procession of heavy equipment and blue city water trucks to honor Will Martin, a plumber with Chicago's water department. Martin also died because of COVID-19.

"He worked out of the department's center district, and was known as an absolute prince by those who were lucky enough to work with him," Mayor Lightfoot said.

"We contracted the virus at the exact same time," said Martin's best friend Byron Finley, who has since recovered from the virus.

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He became emotional thinking about what happened. The loss is unimaginable.

"This is devastating for me. This is devastating for me. I lost my best friend. I lost my best friend," he said.

"Both men were dedicated public servants who loved their city and both deaths serve as another painful and tragic reminder of the seriousness and the danger of this terrible disease," Mayor Lightfoot said.

While new deaths are still being reported, there is also evidence that Chicago is flattening the curve. The mayor and Chicago Public Health Department Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady spoke in detail about steps, like the stay-at-home order, that have had a positive impact.

"All of you staying home has, in fact, saved lives already," Arwady said. "I want to thank you for that, but to also let you know that we are a long way from done."

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