NYPD Sergeant Who Beat Coronavirus Honored At White House Ceremony

WCBS 880 Newsroom
May 15, 2020 - 6:53 pm

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    NEW YORK (WCBS 880) — At a ceremony Friday afternoon in the Rose Garden, President Donald Trump honored coronavirus first responders for their "hard work, heroism and hope" during the pandemic.

    Among the speakers was NYPD Sergeant Spencer Garrett who tested positive for the virus in late March.

    He said breaking the news to his parents, brothers and 8-year-old daughter was "downright scary."

    "I saw the fear in their eyes, I looked at my daughter and I assured her daddy wasn't going anywhere," Garrett said.

    Garrett was among the nearly 6,000 uniformed and civilians members of the force to test positive for the virus. The department lost 42 members to coronavirus-related illness.

    After a vigorous one-month fight, Garrett returned to duty in late April. ​​​​

    "After the experience with the virus I felt compelled to help the residents of the housing developments that I patrol in East Harlem," Garrett said. "Handing out N-95 masks and engaging in important dialogue by educating the residents that not only do not have support and access to PPE hit close to home for me."

    President Donald Trump with Spencer Garrett
    Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images

    Sgt. Garrett was awarded with a certificate of recognition from the White House.

    "I am honored to be here, I am honored to be an NYPD sergeant and most of all I'm honored to be an American," Garrett said. "We are all in this fight together."

    President Trump also honored Amy Ford, a West Virginia nurse who got on a plane for the first time in her life to go to New York where she's been working 12-hour shifts for the past 42 days, treating coronavirus patients in the ICU at Kings County Hospital Center in Brooklyn; Ben Ross, the founder of a bow tie business that has shifted to produce protective masks for medical workers free of charge; a group of Girl Scouts from Maryland who donated cookies to frontline heroes and delievered cards to health care works; a real estate developer and landlord from Arkansas who waived April's rent for his small business tenants.

    The ceremony was not without controversy.

    Big rig truckers could be heard blaring their horns on the street outside in protest of the low shipping rates they say will put many of out business.

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