Mercer County COVID-19 death toll reaches triple digits

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PRINCETON, WV (WVNS) — Mercer County is home to nearly 60,000 people; nearly 60,000 people who are dealing with COVID-19 just like the rest of the state, country, and world.

Now the Mercer County Health Department is seeing a number it is not happy about. One hundred deaths in Mercer County, all related to COVID-19.

“I hate it for the families, I hate it for their caregivers, you know the people taking care of them,” said Topping.

Roger Topping, the Director of the Mercer County Health Department, said although positive cases have gone down substantially since the start of the pandemic, the end is still nowhere near; however, they are working as quickly as they can.

“We have 58 thousand plus people in our county and we’re trying as hard as we can and as fast as we can to put vaccines in arms but it’s gonna be, it’s gonna be a while,” said Topping.

Toping said the demographic of Mercer County contributes to those numbers as well.

“We have a large elderly population in our county. That in one way drives those numbers up. In some cases, the elderly have a comorbidity and something hit their lungs or their heart, or something’s not good and COVID hits them and it kills them,” said Topping.

Topping also said he believes the county relaxed some once the vaccines came out.

“I believe the people relaxed, I believe they felt like it was the cure all for COVID-19. And I’ve been preaching that it’s not the cure all, it’s part of the cure. I use the analogy of a four legged chair. The vaccine is one of the legs, wearing a mask is another, washing your hands is another and social distancing is another. But if you take a four legged chair and one of those legs is missing, it’s gonna fall over,” said Topping.

He said COVID-19 will take more lives, but Mercer County residents can do their part to protect themselves and others by just following guidelines.

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