3 Pharr residents die from COVID-19

Hidalgo County announced that three Pharr women with underlying conditions died Monday from COVID-19 complications, bringing the death toll for the county to 15.

A release from the county says the cases were unrelated and involved one woman in her 40s and two women in their 80s. It says both of the older women were part of a cluster, meaning they likely contracted the virus from someone they knew.

“This is an especially tragic day,” county Judge Richard F. Cortez wrote in the release. “Not only because this virus contributed to the deaths of three of our neighbors, but also because the two older and more vulnerable victims probably knew the person who infected them. That’s the danger of this virus. It can be contracted by someone who is both younger and healthier, then transmitted to someone who is older and more vulnerable. I extend my sincere condolences to these families that have lost loved ones.”

In addition to the three fatalities, the county confirmed 62 more cases of COVID-19 on Monday, bringing the total to 1,112.

The new cases ranged in age from below 20 to above 70, including 27 men and 35 women from Weslaco, Hidalgo, Pharr, McAllen, Mission, Alamo, Edinburg, Mercedes, San Juan, Alton, Donna and undisclosed locations.

Of those, 69 have been hospitalized and nine are being treated in intensive care units. A dozen individuals were released from isolation Monday, leaving the total active cases at 571 with 1,529 tests pending.

Cameron County confirmed an additional 40 cases of the coronavirus Monday evening, raising the total there to 1,178.

An additional 21 individuals recovered Monday, raising that figure to 781, a release from the county read.

The San Benito CISD Athletic Department confirmed in a statement that one of their students tested positive for COVID-19.

“This case was not contracted on campus,” a letter from Athletic Director Dan Gomez read. “If you do not receive a second follow-up phone call to this letter, your student was likely not in direct contact and therefore not in the higher risk group.”

The letter says that students in contact with the individual have already been asked to self-isolate for two weeks and that athletes will be monitored with weekly questionnaires and daily temperature checks.

“If you believe your student-athlete has any symptoms of fever, cough, shortness of breath, sore throat or contact with anyone with COVID-19, please communicate that with the Athletic Department and keep your student at home,” Gomez wrote.

Starr County also saw more cases of COVID-19 on Monday, confirming an additional 19 positive tests which brought the total there to 146, according to Dr. Jose Vazquez, the county’s health authority.

Of the new cases 12 are women and seven are men, ranging in age from 19 to 77.

At least 35 of the previously reported Starr County cases are no longer active and one person with the disease has died.