New York Police Department Detective Cedric Dixon has become the first officer to die from coronavirus in New York City, passing away on Saturday as the city saw a surge both in cases and deaths during the COVID-19 outbreak.
As the New York Post reported, the 48-year-old Dixon was a detective in the 32nd Precinct in Harlem, and died at North Central Bronx Hospital after falling ill. There were more than 151 people who died between Friday and Saturday in New York City, which has become the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak in the United States.
Dixon Remembered As Generous, A ‘Good Cop’
As reports of Dixon’s death circulated early on Saturday, many who knew the NYPD detective spoke out to remember his generous nature and dedication to his job. NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea spoke about Dixon’s death at a press conference on Saturday, saying that he was remembered for having a knack for fixing electronics and sharing that skill with others.
“I can tell you that I’ve spoken to many of his friends and coworkers since this morning, and he was known as the person that would do anything to help you,” Shea said, via the New York Post. “If you had something broken, he was particularly fond of fixing technology and electronics.”
“He is going to be so sorely missed.”
Another officer who worked directly with Dixon remembered him as a “good cop” with a “great personality.”
The DEA is deeply saddened to announce the death of Detective Cedric Dixon due to #COVID19. Cedric’s 23 years of dedication to protecting our city is the epitome of “The Greatest Detectives in the World.” Our prayers are with his family. We will forever be here to support them. pic.twitter.com/1xLaORXu6N— Detectives' Endowment Association (@NYCPDDEA) March 28, 2020
The report noted that there were two other staff members at the NYPD to die from coronavirus, though Dixon was the first officer. An administrative aide died on Thursday, and later that day, a cleaner also passed away.
“We have lost three members of our family in a little over 48 hours,” Shea said. “As I stand here I cannot begin to describe what we are feeling, what the families of these three heroes are feeling.”
Though Dixon is the first death, more than 500 members of the NYPD have tested positive for the coronavirus and more than 11 percent have called in sick, the report noted. Shea said on Saturday that officers have willingly put themselves in harm’s way as they continue to serve the city.
Dixon’s Death Comes Amid Surge Of Cases In NYC
The NYPD detective’s death came as cases in the New York City area surged, with a total of 67 people dying overnight between Friday and Saturday and a total of 157 people dying in a one-day span. As The Inquisitr reported, that equated to one death every 9.5 minutes for that time period, nearly doubling from the one-day period that preceded it.
Officials in New York City and the state have instituted stringent measures in an effort to slow the spread of the virus, but cases continued to surge in the metro area. Hospital systems have become overwhelmed with victims, especially those who are older and suffer from pre-existing health conditions, which experts say are the most vulnerable groups during the outbreak. The New York Post report noted that Dixon suffered from asthma and diabetes.