15 of 21 deaths at Holyoke Soldiers’ Home linked to coronavirus

HOLYOKE, MASS. (WHDH) - Twenty-one veterans at the Holyoke Soldiers’ Home have now died and 15 of those deaths have been directly linked to coronavirus, officials announced Friday. Dozens more have tested positive for the potentially deadly disease.

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There now have been 15 coronavirus-related deaths at the home, up from 12 on Thursday, Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders said during a news conference at the State House.

Two of the 21 veterans who have died tested negative for coronavirus, while the cause of three deaths is still pending. One death remains unknown.

“We extend our deepest sympathies to the families and loved ones of the residents,” Sudders said.

In addition to the deaths, 59 other veterans have now tested positive for the virus. All veterans at the facility have been tested and there have been 160 negative cases.

The head of the Holyoke facility, Bennett Walsh, has been placed on paid administrative leave but insists he has done nothing wrong.

Gov. Charlie Baker has since launched a full investigation into the facility.

At the Chelsea Soldiers’ Home, two residents who tested positive have died and nine other veterans have tested positive.

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