NJ marks 1 year since first known COVID case

New Jersey
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FILE- In this May 18, 2020 file photo, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy wears a face mask during a coronavirus press briefing in Trenton, N.J. (Jose F. Moreno/The Philadelphia Inquirer via AP, Pool, File)

NEW JERSEY — Thursday marked the anniversary of the first known and confirmed COVID-19 case in New Jersey.

On March 4, 2020 — just days after the first coronavirus case was diagnosed in New York — a 32-year-old man from Fort Lee tested positive for the virus.

At the time, Gov. Phil Murphy reassured residents the state would work aggressively to contain the virus. Now, more than a year into the pandemic, he reassured residents that things were improving in the state with the ongoing vaccination effort.

“One year ago today, the first confirmed case of COVID-19 reported in New Jersey,” Murphy said. “Today, the light of a new day is breaking on the horizon with over two million vaccines doses administered across our state.”

Just under a week after the first case in New Jersey was reported, the state had its first virus death. John Brennan, 69, worked in New York at the Yonkers Raceway and had a history of traveling between the two states.

The state’s second death was a woman in her 50s in Monmouth County and New Jersey’s third coronavirus death was a man in his 90s.

As of Thursday, more than 712,000 people have tested positive for coronavirus in New Jersey and more than 21,000 have died.

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