A Bergen County horse trainer with several underlying medical conditions was New Jersey’s first coronavirus death, state officials said Tuesday.
The 69-year-old man was identified as Little Ferry resident John Brennan, a horse trainer and mainstay in the paddock of Yonkers Raceway, according to several horse racing publications.
He was hospitalized at Hackensack University Medical Center last Friday, and had conditions that included emphysema, diabetes and hypertension, said state Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli. He suffered a heart attack Monday night and was revived, but died Tuesday morning after a second heart attack, Persichilli said. Brennan had not recently traveled outside the United States, she said.
The racetrack was closed Tuesday, according to Thoroughbred Daily News and Harness Racing Update, which identified Brennan as the New Jersey coronavirus victim.
Officials also announced three other presumed cases of coronavirus Tuesday — a Teaneck man and two Burlington County residents — bringing the state total to 15 just a day after Gov. Phil Murphy declared a public health emergency to set efforts in motion to keep the virus from spreading.