As COVID-19 spread, a growing number of people in Central Oregon now know someone who has contracted the disease.
In the case of Central Oregon Daily Meteorologist Scott Elnes, his connection came in the direct form of his brother, who contracted COVID-19 while traveling to Spain weeks ago.
Here’s his story – and words of caution.
“I’m the Reverend Eric Elnes; I live in Omaha, Nebraska; I’m the Senior Pastor at Countryside Community Church and a few weeks ago I tested positive for COVID-19. I also happen to be the brother of Scott Elnes, who works for Central Oregon Daily.”
“I had just gotten back from Spain on a Monday night and I felt great in the office the next day and then on Wednesday I developed a slight cough like I would normally get during allergy season. The next day I heard that Spain had been put on the hot list in terms of Coronavirus, so I thought well, maybe I better call a hotline to make sure. So I called, and they said that because I had been to Spain they would test me because of one symptom.”
My church in on the Tri-Faith commons in Omaha which is where my church has collocated together with a Jewish synagogue and an Islamic Mosque. So we regularly have contact with one another. So I have the unfortunate distinction of exposing the three major Abrahamic faiths to the coronavirus and about 30 people ended up going into quarantine from the synagogue, the mosque and my church.”
“That’s why I became very public on this. I went on CNN and so forth saying ‘Hey, we need to quarantine like right now’. Because it’s not just gonna be people who are sick and vomiting and high temperatures and obvious to stay away from, but actually people like me who would be completely unobvious. “
“The main thing I would recommend is whether or not you’re in a county that has that shelter in place policy, adopt that anyway. I mean the models indicate that we haven’t even reached the peak yet and there are people like me out there who probably have very little symptoms and may not be even thinking twice about whether they have COVID or not. So better to stay safe right now than be sorry.”
“Stay home. Save Lives. Maybe even your own.”