Grandmother home after battle with COVID-19

FLATLANDS, Brooklyn — It is a story of the power of love, perseverance, prayer and lots of good luck.

A family in Brooklyn is celebrating their matriarch, a 73-year-old great grandmother, coming home from the hospital after a nearly six month battle with the coronavirus.

Her family is calling it a miracle arter Marie Jean Pierre has spent 163 days fighting the coronavirus, first at home and then in Maimonides Medical Center and finally at Saints Joachim and Anne Nursing and Rehabilitation Center.

Jean Pierre had a tracheotomy and had to re-learn how to talk and walk again.

But this mother of six, grandmother of 11 and great grandmother of nine is clearly a fighter and finally, surrounded by so much love, she came home.

“We were on the phone every day as a family in a conference call,” Marie Delus, Jean Pierre’s daughter said. “We called the doctors every day, we knew what medication she was in. We told each new doctor,” she added.

Jean Pierre’s COVID-19 saga began in mid March when she was having trouble breathing and her family in Flatlands took her to Maimonides and during that six months battle with the virus, at least three times doctors told the family the end was near.

“We dropped her off in the 21st and in the 23rd, the doctors told us she wasn’t going to make it through the night,” Delus said. “She went through a nightmare and survived.”

The family says they have learned so many lessons and are so grateful to the medical staff and the power of prayer.

“We have to thank Maimonides and the doctors and nurses there,” Marie Poulard, Jean Pierre’s adopted daughter, said. “I am a nurse myself and it’s amazing the work they put in.”

“We’re going to help around the house, help clean, groceries,”Lyndell Lewis, Jean Pierre’s 18 year old great grandson said.

Jean Pierre says after 163 of hospital food she was really looking forward to a home-cooked meal of chicken, okra and white rice.



Art helps homeless New Yorkers during pandemic

NEW YORK — The last several months have been fraught with challenging times: the coronavirus outbreak triggered a shutdown of our economy and there have been widespread protests and a national reckoning over racial inequality, police reform and the deaths of minority Americans at the hands of law enforcement.

It’s been a lot for any person to take and homeless New Yorkers are no different.

Mike Durkin is the recreational specialist at Two Bridges Women’s shelter in the Lower East Side, which is part of the Institute for Community Living. The organization is comprised of shelters and shared apartments. It provides rehabilitation services for some of our most vulnerable and at-risk New Yorkers. The shelter has encouraged the women they assist to channel their overwhelming feelings through their art.

“There’s all this uncertainty,” Durkin said. “There’s all this in limbo, so the art was a way to process those emotions.”

Rapper and poet Simone said she’s taken part in recent protests and she’s expressing her thoughts and feelings in her poetry.

“Black Lives Matter has been a big statement in my poetry,” said Simone.

Wallena has been singing her entire life. When it comes to the coronavirus outbreak, she’s using music to make sense of it herself and to help children understand it.

”The major concern I have is with the children,” said Wallena. “I wonder every day how they’re handling this.”

Too often, we see troubling images of people experiencing homelessness. But they are so much more than how they are portrayed.

“The folks that we engage with at the shelter are embroiled in many different endeavors, whether it’s through substance, whether it’s through mental illness,” said Durkin. “During these challenging times, that art has a way to soothe.”

They are finding an outlet where they can .

“Arts been taking me to another level of calmness,” said Simone.



Man goes home after 122 days fighting virus

ALBERTSON, Long Island (WABC) — A man who spent months battling COVID-19 and nearly died is back at home on Long Island.

Anthony Bosco, a 62-year-old father of three, was released from rehab on Friday after spending 122 days fighting coronavirus.

He was admitted to North Shore University Hospital on March 24 — four months ago.

RELATED | ‘Miracle Larry’ heads home after fighting COVID since March

Bosco, who recently retired as an MTA Safety training expert, suffered a series of complications and setbacks but pulled through.

“It’s great, it’s the greatest thing to be with my family for the first time in four months, and that I’m able to do so and I got really sick but I’m obviously here to say hi from six feet above ground,” he said.

Bosco spent 30 days on a ventilator and suffered many close calls of death, but his family refused the DNR option.

At Northwell Health Stern Family Center for Rehabilitation, he had to relearn how to walk and talk.

WATCH THE SERIES: EYEWITNESS TO A PANDEMIC (Episode 6 below)

MORE CORONAVIRUS COVID-19 COVERAGE

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Manager fired for refusing to serve customer

GLEN COVE, Long Island (WABC) — The manager of an ice cream store on Long Island says he was fired for refusing to serve a customer who was coughing and not wearing a mask.

The manager claims his boss ordered him to serve people who weren’t wearing masks because the Carvel ice cream store on Forest Avenue was losing too much money to refuse anyone.

“I was told that if was too scary to work here no more, too scary to work here, you don’t have to work here anymore. And I was terminated from my job,” said former manager Thomas DeSarle.

In the age of COVID-19, it’s a scary scenario for an essential worker.

RELATED | Here’s what happens to oxygen levels when you wear a mask

“I heard a customer coughing in the front of the store so I walked to the front,” DeSarle said of the July 11 incident. “He was standing there coughing on his hand. And again, coughing not to clear his throat. He was coughing loud, like a wet cough.”

The customer who was coughing loudly and not wearing the mask required by New York law then entered the ice cream store.

Until that day, DeSarle had been the store manager and worked 50-hour work weeks for two years.

RELATED | Which masks protect those around you best? Researchers weigh in

“I said, ‘Sir, do you have a mask?’ Didn’t respond to me. I said, ‘Sir, can I get you a mask?’ All he did was keep looking up at the board, trying to order,” DeSarle said.

DeSarle said he’d hoped the customer would pay with a credit card so he could avoid close contact, but instead, the customer moved closer and tried to pay with what DeSarle described as a sweaty $10 bill.

And that’s when DeSarle said he had to draw the line and said he felt there was no way he could touch the money because he could get sick.

“To be fired for following rules and for following state guidelines seems not correct, doesn’t seem right. Doesn’t seem right to me,” DeSarle said.

DeSarle has since hired an attorney.

“We have a few options. First is filing a complaint on the state website with Cuomo, we’re considering doing that. Or we may go file a state action with a whistleblower violation,” said personal attorney Jon Bell.

Eyewitness News contacted both the Glen Cove franchise store owner and the corporate officer for comment but did not hear back.

Traveling nurses recall “It was like a medical war zone”

MORE CORONAVIRUS COVID-19 COVERAGE

abc7NY Phase Tracker:

COVID-19 Help, Information. Stimulus and Business Updates
UPDATES
New York City

New Jersey
Long Island
Westchester and Hudson Valley
Connecticut

7 On Your Side Investigates: Up to 4,000 coronavirus cases prevented by NYC contact tracers

REOPENING INFORMATION

What’s Open, What’s Closed

Reopening New York State
Reopening New Jersey
Reopening Connecticut

Total count of NYC, Long Island COVID-19 cases based on patient address

Copyright © 2020 WABC-TV. All Rights Reserved.



NJ unveils school reopening plans

NEW JERSEY — As New Jersey unveiled school reopening guidance on Friday, Gov. Phil Murphy said he has “every expectation” that kids will return to schools come September.

The guidance comes with the requirement that the state’s public schools will open in some capacity with the health of students, their families, and educators being the “top priority,” according to the governor.

Where it can be done, overall class sizes should be limited to reach the standards of social distancing, according to Murphy.

For larger districts, the state is providing the flexibility to rearrange schedules to allow for grouping of students, or by implementing hybrid learning environments.

Districts must prepare to switch to remote learning “at any time,” Murphy said. School officials must also make an effort to ensure social distancing will be practiced throughout the day including cafeterias and banning enclosed groups.

Proper social distancing practiced must be followed at all times. Face coverings will be required unless doing so would inhibit the individual’s health or the individual is under two years of age. Students are also strongly encouraged to wear face coverings and are required to do so when social distancing cannot be maintained, unless doing so would inhibit the student’s health. All schools will also work with their custodial staff for proper building sanitizing and cleaning on a daily basis.

The governor said the guidance set up “started with listening” as the state had been in contact with educators and stakeholders about concerns and what can be done for the upcoming school year.

Officials listened to about 50 education and community organizations, over 300 school superintendents and surveyed more than 300,000 parents and guardians to come up with the plans.

Four principles reopening guidance must be followed:

  • Ensuring conducive and learning atmosphere
  • Supporting education leaders with planning
  • Providing policy guidance and necessary funding to schools
  • Securing continuing of learning

However, Murphy also acknowledged that there is “no one-size-fits-all approach” when it comes to school reopenings because there are differences which exist among schools and education communities, including geographic, demographic and economic factors.

Guidance outlines standards every school should expect to be conditional for reopening, it also comes with the flexibility that individual districts will need to ensure an effective implementation strategy that meets their unique needs.

In addition, the Department of Education released “Conditions for Learning” which involve the social, emotional and environmental factors that can impact educator capacity to teach and student capacity to learn.

  • Districts must organize and prepare for the next school year, acknowledging the potential trauma that staff and students faced during COVID-19 school closures.
  • Districts should seek to actively include families and students in the decision-making process, teams and meetings regarding interventions and supports.
  • Students and staff need to feel cared for, reengaged and acclimated to the school community, so schools can deliver instruction most effectively.
  • Provide professional development to support educators’ integration of SEL in their teaching, including the skills to foster positive learning environments and techniques for embedding SEL into in-person or virtual instruction.

For a full report of guidelines, click here.

Murphy teased Thursday that plans would be released the following day, adding “this guidance has been in the works for weeks.”

He also told the PIX11 Morning News he was “confident we’ll be back in school when we open up again in late August.”

Schools in New Jersey have been closed since March 18 in an attempt to reduce the spread of the virus.

In New York City, Mayor Bill de Blasio said schools are expected to resume on Sept. 10 and Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza laid out a tentative framework for the fall, which includes blended learning.

On Friday, the mayor said the city and school officials are working on plans to get the maximum number of children back to school safely.