The Marine Corps announced Wednesday that its assistant commandant tested positive for COVID-19, days after most of the military's top officials began quarantining following possible exposure to the virus.
The Marine Corps reported Gen. Gary Thomas's diagnosis in a press release Wednesday, adding that he had been in quarantine after being notified that he had come into contact with the Coast Guard’s vice commandant, Adm. Charles Ray, who tested positive for the coronavirus on Monday after feeling mild symptoms over the weekend.
Wednesday's statement added that Thomas was “experiencing mild symptoms, but otherwise is feeling well,” and that he will continue to quarantine at his home.
“The Marine Corps is following established policies for COVID, per CDC guidelines, to include quarantine and contact tracing. According to CDC guidelines, any Marine Corps personnel who were in close contact with the general will also quarantine,” the military branch said in its statement.
“Since April, the Marine Corps has been following CDC and DoD guidelines for temperature testing, social distancing to the greatest extent possible, and the wearing of masks when social distancing is not possible,” the press release continued. “The Marine Corps remains operationally ready to answer the Nation’s call."
Following news of Ray’s diagnosis, members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff who met with Ray at the Pentagon on Friday began quarantining, including Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Mark MilleyMark MilleyOvernight Defense & National Security — The Pentagon's deadly mistake Pentagon admits 'tragic mistake' in strike that killed 10 civilians The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - Washington braces for Jan. 6 rally MORE, as well as the chiefs of the Army, Navy, Air Force, Space Force and National Guard.
The only member of the Joint Chiefs who didn’t meet with Ray was Marine Corps Commandant Gen. David Berger, who was traveling. Thomas attended the meeting instead.
It is not clear where Ray contracted the virus, although his recent schedule included a visit to the White House, which is now at the center of a coronavirus outbreak that includes President TrumpDonald TrumpOvernight Defense & National Security — The Pentagon's deadly mistake Overnight Energy & Environment — Presented by Climate Power — Interior returns BLM HQ to Washington France pulls ambassadors to US, Australia in protest of submarine deal MORE and several members of the commander in chief’s inner circle.