Story at a glance
- “We messed up, we let our guard down,” Larry Dixon said before passing away, according to Alabama Daily News.
- “Please tell everybody to be careful. This is real, and if you get diagnosed, get help immediately,” he said.
- The Republican served in the Alabama Senate from 1983 to 2010 representing the 25th District in Montgomery and Elmore counties.
A former Alabama state senator who died after contracting the coronavirus issued a warning to the people of Alabama just before he passed away.
Former Alabama Sen. Larry Dixon died on Friday at the age of 78 after a bout with COVID-19. The Republican served in the Alabama Senate from 1983 to 2010 representing the 25th District in Montgomery and Elmore counties.
David Thrasher, a critical care pulmonologist and close friend of Dixon, told Alabama Daily News Dixon’s wife explained to him her husband’s last words were a warning to help prevent more deaths from the virus that has left more than 283,000 Americans dead.
“We messed up, we let our guard down,” Dixon said, according to Thrasher. “Please tell everybody to be careful. This is real, and if you get diagnosed, get help immediately.”
Thrasher said Dixon was exposed to the virus at a small social gathering several weeks ago. The doctor treated Dixon early on in his illness. Dixon’s condition worsened and he was eventually placed on a ventilator before passing away.
The former state lawmaker was also the head of the State Board of Medical Examiners for 35 years before retiring in 2016.
“While we mourn Larry Dixon’s passing, we are forever grateful for his distinguished service to the medical profession and to the State of Alabama. He set an incredible example of service for us all. Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife, Gaynell, and his family during this difficult time,” officials from the Alabama Board of Medical Examiners said in a statement.
The warning comes as the U.S. is currently reporting an alarming number of COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths.
An average of more than 196,000 cases is being reported every day with more than 2,200 new deaths. More than 102,000 people are currently hospitalized with COVID-19. Alabama has reported more than 272,000 cases and 3,892 deaths.
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