Out of coma, Bronx man thankful for wife, others after hard fought COVID-19 battle

COVID survivor out of coma, kisses wife

Darrell and Renee Cross (PIX11).

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A Bronx court sergeant and 9/11 hero who spent 72 days in the hospital fighting for his life after contracting COVID-19 is celebrating his life with the love of his life.  

Darrell and Renee Cross have been married 21 years. After a difficult year, their love appears to be as strong as ever.

Darrell’s fight against COVID-19 was a tough one. He was on a ventilator for nearly six weeks, he spent two weeks in a medically induced coma, and spent 72 days in the hospital.

His wife, Renee never gave up hope he would wake up.

“I think Darrell and I have a real connection,” his wife said. “He felt me pulling for him. I prayed everyday.”

April 20 is Renee’s bday. Last year, she got the best present ever: her husband woke up from his coma. PIX11 was there when he was released from the hospital.

Since then, Darrell has gained back twenty pounds and said he feels like a new man.

Before his diagnosis, Darrell worked as a Bronx court sergeant  for 30 years and was involved in 9/11 rescues. But with that in mind, he said nothing compared to his battle with COVID-19. 

“That fight tested my very soul. I had to relearn how to do everything. Learn how to talk, walk, and chew food,” he said.

His rock, he said, was always his wife; the couple is now reunited — and inseparable.

“On our 21st wedding anniversary, I cried like a baby. I almost didn’t get to see those plans. I’ve been given a second chance at everything,” said Darrell. 

The love of his life, his family, friends, and the support of the hundreds of court officers and personnel, he said, get him through the tough times even now.

“He represents the best of the best of the court officers of the State of New York. If he wants to come back we have a place for him,” said Dennis Quirk, the president of the NYS Court Officers Association.

In the meantime, Darrell’s uniform is dry cleaned and ready to go

But everyday, he said, he feels closer to his goal of getting back to work.

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