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Louisiana police chief recovering, fire chief dies of COVID

January 20, 2021 GMT

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — A Louisiana police chief is recovering from COVID-19 while a longtime fire chief has died of complications from the disease caused by the novel coronavirus.

Bruce Cutrer, who led Tangipahoa Fire District #1 in Amite, died Tuesday of COVID-19 complications, the Louisiana State Fireman’s Association said.

“Chief Cutrer dedicated his life to the people of Tangipahoa Parish. For more than 50 years, he risked his life to help his friends, neighbors, and complete strangers in their hour of need, and as a community, we mourn the loss of this man who was truly a public servant,” Tangipahoa Parish President Robby Miller said.

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Miller ordered flags at all parish buildings to fly at half-staff in Cutrer’s honor, WAFB-TV reported.

As of Wednesday, the Louisiana Department of Health reported 2,536 new cases of the coronavirus, bringing the total of confirmed and probable cases to 374,582. In addition, 59 new deaths brought that total to 8,383.

Meanwhile, Youngsville Police Chief Rickey Boudreaux said his COVID symptoms were serious, KLFY-TV reported.

“I ended up in the hospital to get the antibody infusion,” the chief said. “I could hardly breathe, the fever, the body aches and the headaches were horrible; but now I seem to be on the road to recovery.”

Boudreaux admitted that he had sometimes let down his guard in the fight against the coronavirus.

“I was thinking that if I haven’t got it by now I wasn’t going to get it but I got it,” the chief said.

As a precaution, the department’s administration office has been shut down until Monday. Patrol officers will be working at all times and the community will be protected, Boudreaux said.