New Jersey’s second coronavirus death has been identified as a religion teacher from Freehold.
Gov. Phil Murphy announced the death of a woman in her 50s over the weekend, two days after she passed away Thursday, but did not name her.
However, a Facebook post from the Co-Cathedral of St. Robert Ballarmine in Freehold identifies her as Rita Fusco-Jackson, a religion teacher at the church.
“I ask that every member of the parish please remember the Fusco-Jackson family in their prayers as they deal with the loss of Rita and for all who have been impacted by COVID-19 here in the parish and throughout the nation,” the post reads.
Fusco-Jackson taught in the church’s confirmation program, though the cathedral said her participation in activities throughout the last two weeks had been minimal.
A relative of Fusco-Jackson’s who teaches fifth-graders at the church and two students from their family are now in self-quarantine, the post said. The three unidentified relatives did not show any symptoms prior to the move, church officials said.
Fusco-Jackson is connected with John Brennan, a horse trainer from Little Ferry who was the first New Jersey resident to die from the coronavirus, according to NJ.com.
One of Fusco-Jackson’s siblings is a close friend of Brennan and doctors suspect the virus was transmitted during a recent family gathering, with several other attendees since testing positive, state Health Commissioner Judy Persichilli said.
There were 178 confirmed cases of coronavirus in New Jersey as of Monday afternoon, including 61 in Bergen County, according to the state Department of Health.