SAN ANTONIO – Bexar County Sheriff Deputy Timothy De La Fuente died from complications of COVID-19, the Bexar County Medical Examiner’s Office said Tuesday.
Other factors that contributed to De La Fuente’s death were hypertension and cardiomegaly, or an enlarged heart, the ME’s Office said. De La Fuente, 53, is the first deputy in the department to die of the virus.
The 27-year BCSO veteran got tested for COVID-19 on April 28, Sheriff Javier Salazar said. De La Fuente called in sick the next two days complaining of shortness of breath and a dry cough. He was found dead in his home on April 30.
De La Fuente died before he was notified that he had tested positive for coronavirus.
Law enforcement on Monday morning gathered at the Bexar County Medical Examiner’s Office, where they escorted Deputy De La Fuente to Mission Park South Funeral Home on Southeast Military Drive.
Funeral arrangements are pending.
Salazar said De La Fuente’s death is being considered an on-duty death and he will be laid to rest with full honors. But his funeral won’t be typical of prior law enforcement services because of the coronavirus pandemic.
COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the new virus, stands for coronavirus disease 2019. The disease first appeared in late December 2019 in Wuhan, China, but spread around the world in early 2020, causing the World Health Organization to declare a pandemic in March. The first case confirmed in the U.S. was in mid-January and the first case confirmed in San Antonio was in mid-February.
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