Paul Cary, a Colorado paramedic who volunteered to work in New York City amid the COVID-19 outbreak there, has died.
The 66-year-old worked for a private ambulance company called “Ambulnz.” Prior to that, Cary spent more than 30 years with the fire department in Aurora, Colorado.
Cary was one of 12 Colorado-based employees who volunteered for a temporary reassignment to New York City after FEMA requested additional help in late March.
“We were devastated to learn that our father and grandfather, Paul Cary, became the latest victim to die of COVID-19,” Cary’s family said in a statement to The Denver Channel. “Our family grieves his loss, and knows that all his friends and family will miss him greatly.”
“He risked his own health and safety to protect others and left this world a better place,” the statement continued. “We are at peace knowing that Paul did what he loved and what he believed in, right up until the very end.”
Rick Diemert, an operations manager for Ambulnz in Colorado, said at a press conference Thursday afternoon that Cary was “adamant” about helping respond to the crisis despite being in a higher-risk category for the disease. Cary anticipated volunteering for a second deployment in New York City before he got sick.
Diemert said Cary began showing COVID-19 symptoms on April 19 or 20 and was admitted to Montefiore Hospital in the Bronx on April 21. He eventually transitioned to a ventilator in the ICU.
Cary is survived by two sons and four grandchildren.
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