The first member of any branch of the American military to die from coronavirus was a member of the New Jersey National Guard, according to the Defense Department.

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New Jersey National Guardsman and Army Capt. Douglas Linn Hickok had tested positive for COVID-19 and was hospitalized in Pennsylvania on March 21. He died at the hospital on Saturday.

"I'm heartbroken by the loss of @NJNationalGuard Captain Douglas Linn Hickok to coronavirus," Murphy tweeted Monday. "He was a drilling guardsman and physician's assistant ...Our thoughts are with his wife, children, and their family."'

A member of Hickok's family told Military.com that he  had been living most recently in Pennsylvania. He was 57.

Military.com/photo courtesy of family

 

 

 

In a statement, Secretary of Defense Mark Esper said..

"Today is a sad day for the Department of Defense as we have lost our first American service member - active, reserve or Guard - to Coronavirus.

This is a stinging loss for our military community, and our condolences go out to his family, friends, civilian co-workers and the entire National Guard community. The news of this loss strengthens our resolve to work ever more closely with our interagency partners to stop the spread of COVID-19."

Source: NBC News