A 51-year-old Manhattan man, who became Riley County’s first patient to be tested positive for the Coronavirus, is a K-State faculty member.
Andrew Smith is a professor in the A.Q. Miller School of Journalism, who recently traveled with his family and several journalism students to London to study abroad over Spring Break. Those students and family members are also quarantined in their homes.
In a Facebook video message Sunday from intensive care at Ascension Via Christi Hospital, Smith thanked friends and family for all the well wishes and support.
“Thank you for the pictures and the anecdotes and everything, it’s very kind. I love all of you. I can feel the prayers and the well-wishes and it’s really sustaining me in here,” he said.
In addition to COVID-19, Smith is being treated for bilateral pneumonia and was on oxygen. Smith says the prognosis is ongoing, with a goal of getting out of intensive care and moving on to the next step.
“I’m fighting hard. I’m a fighter and so is my wife Jen and my two kids are fighting through as well, so than you so much for your support,” he said.
Smith says upon becoming sick while in London, he and his family limited their exposure as they returned home.
“We did not stop anywhere, we did not stop at restaurants. We got off the plane, into a waiting car and I’ve only been to the emergency room and the ICU and that’s it,” he said.
Smith said his family was very cognizant of the pandemic and made sure not to come in contact with others.