Coronavirus deaths: Chicago pastor, Hobart pastor's wife among latest victims of COVID-19

Liz Nagy Image
Wednesday, April 1, 2020
Chicago past, Hobart pastor's wife among latest COVID-19 victims
A Chicago pastor and an Indiana pastor's wife are among the latest people to be lost to the novel coronavirus.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Two people affiliated with churches in Chicago and Northwest Indiana have died from the novel coronavirus.

Pastor Keith Burgess was a force in the South Side faith community.

"This man literally did everything he could do to embody what it means to be Jesus," said Brandon Clark, nephew.

But try as he did, Pastor Burgess was not invincible to COVID-19. After self-quarantining while feeling flu-like symptoms two weeks ago, Burgess' niece said it was too much. His teenage son dropped him off at the hospital.

"They shortly called him and said 'We're putting him on a ventilator,' because his lungs are weak and we need to get him into a medically induced coma," said Lauren Clark, niece.

Pastor Burgess never came out of the coma.

"We're trying to put the pieces of our lives back together and think about where do we go from here," Clark said.

In Hobart, the same pain is crushing Pastor Jeff Spencer while his wife suffers the symptoms of the novel coronavirus.

"I told her that I loved her and that I would be with her. And I haven't been able to," he said through tears.

That was more than 10 days ago. This morning, Spencer posted on Facebook that doctors saw no brain activity in his wife Darlene. They removed the feeding tube that's helped keep her alive, and she died at 10:30 a.m.