A Connecticut father of newborn twins who tested positive for coronavirus is continuing his fight against the illness, as his wife warns that the panic is more than just “hysteria.”
The Wilton man, whose identity is being withheld over the family’s privacy concerns, began experiencing symptoms of the highly contagious coronavirus after attending a work conference in San Francisco in late February, his wife wrote on a GoFundMe page.
He returned home on Feb. 28 feeling tired, and by March 2, had developed a fever that they initially attributed to the flu, she told Hearst Connecticut Media, per the Connecticut Post. Not long after, he tested positive for coronavirus and developed pneumonia.
“He quickly progressed to bilateral pneumonia and was hospitalized a week later in respiratory distress,” she wrote on the GoFundMe. “He is now in the ICU at Danbury Hospital in a medically induced coma and on a ventilator. His condition is guarded.”
GoFundMe Connecticut coronavirus patient
She wrote that doctors have said his road to recovery is a “marathon, not a sprint,” and that, as a Star Wars fan, “the ‘force’ is strong with this one.”
The man’s wife has kept the GoFundMe page updated with his progress, and on Wednesday, wrote that his doctors have seen improvement, and are considering trying to wean him off his ventilator as early as this weekend.
“I know some people are saying this is hysteria, but I think it’s really important for people to take this seriously,” she reportedly told Hearst. “My husband got really sick, really fast.”
In the meantime, his wife, a per diem registered nurse, said she has been home with the couple’s twin sons under quarantine, and is unable to work “for the foreseeable future” despite the fact that neither she nor her children have shown signs of illness. (“Some spread might be possible before people show symptoms,” the CDC states on its website.)
On the GoFundMe page, she said her husband has not had a fever since Monday night, and that she anxiously hopes he’ll be in good shape by March 28 so the couple can attend a planned dinner and Broadway show in New York City to celebrate their fifth wedding anniversary. However, as New York shuts down gatherings of 500 people or more (including Broadway shows) and social distancing becomes the new norm while the virus spreads, that might not be possible.
“He can fight this thing I know it,” she wrote. “I miss him so much. I haven’t gone 24 hours not talking to him in 5.5 years. I had to replay some old voicemails back from when we were dating, to hear his voice… I can’t wait for the day I can hug him again.”
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The man is one of three confirmed cases of coronavirus in Connecticut, according to The New York Times. There have been at least 1,297 confirmed cases and 37 deaths in the country as of Thursday afternoon.
Because the man did not feel well upon his arrival home after his work conference, he did not come into contact with very many people in Connecticut, his wife, who did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment, told Hearst.
She said his steps were retraced by authorities, who said they could “count on one hand” the number of people with whom he’d interacted, the Connecticut Post reported.