Active, visible and ubiquitous in his city throughout the crisis, Paterson Mayor Andre Sayegh said he found out today, “like so many around the world,” that he tested positive for COVID-19.
“I was one of hundreds of first responders and city employees tested this past weekend,” said the mayor.
“COVID-19 is a silent virus and I do not know exactly where I may have contracted it,” he added. “I am not suffering from a fever or cough, but will continue to monitor for symptoms as I am now fully quarantined to my home. My wife has been tested today as well, and we will closely monitor our children.”
Sayegh remained out and about at all times and among the people of his city as COVID-19 shook Paterson. As of today, 1,337 Patersonians have officially tested positive for the virus, and 11 city residents have died.
“I encourage all Patersonians to take this disease seriously and stay at home when possible,” he said today. “Even with all my careful efforts of social distancing for the last month – keeping six feet away from all individuals, vigorously practicing good hand hygiene, and even over the last week, wearing a mask in public – I have fallen prey to this virus. But I am a fighter and will continue to do my job on behalf of the City of Paterson. I will keep you updated on my health as the days progress.”
The mayor will work from home while he adheres to a quarantine.
“I will tell you this, Paterson, I will be on the road to recovery,” he said. “I have been leading from the front, and it is an honor to serve you.”
He pans to report messages every day to keep the city updated.
“Paterson, please stay safe and stay strong,” Sayegh said. “Stay home and save lives. This is something
we will conquer. We will conquer COVID. I am proud to be your mayor. I am proud to be a part of the Paterson family.”
This past weekend, Mayor Sayegh joined a contingent of emergency medical personnel from all over Passaic County to celebrate Dr. James Pruden and the staff of St. Joseph’s Hospital. Sayegh stood outside the doctor’s hospital room in a sign of solidarity and appreciation for him and his fellow medical staff and support personnel at the hard-hit frontline Paterson hospital.
“We are stronger than COVID-19,” said Sayegh, who stood in the street outside the doctor’s hospital room with a palm leaf in honor of Palm Sunday, and expressed his gratitude to the doctors, nurses and firefighters that continue to battle the deadly virus.
“It’s a very emotional moment, and a draining and challenging situation but we are not alone,” said Sayegh.