The Winnebago Tribe and the Northeast Nebraska Public Health Department have confirmed the first known death from COVID-19 in Thurston County.

The current announced total of cases within the county stands at 35, according to NNPHD’s latest figures. The vast majority at this point in time appear to be members of the county’s two Native American tribes.

The Winnebago Tribe has publicly offered condolences to the family and friends of its member who died. At this point in time, no further information about the individual has been released.

While the situation is fluid and there are three entities announcing totals that may not always perfectly coincide with the latest data, what has been announced is that there are 35 total cases in Thurston County, nine of which are Winnebago Tribal members and 21 of which are Omaha Tribal members. That leaves at least five patients who are not tribal members.

The public health department does not release information about the location or identity of those who test positive for the virus. The numbers associated with each tribe are taken from announcements they have each released to the public. 

“We are all saddened to hear of the passing of one of our neighbors and our thoughts are with the loved ones they leave behind. COVID-19 is a serious illness, especially for those with underlying health conditions and those aged 65 and over. Remember that we are all in this together and it’s important that we continue to use good infection control and social distancing practices to help stop the spread of the virus to others,” said Julie Rother, director of the NNPHD.