Retired NYPD sergeant with coronavirus drops dead on Manhattan street hour after leaving hospital
Retired NYPD Sergeant Yon Chang, pictured when he was still on the force.
A retired NYPD sergeant left an Upper East Side hospital after he was diagnosed with COVID-19 — and was found dead about an hour later on the street outside, police sources said Tuesday
Yon Chang, 56, was at Lenox Hill Hospital early Tuesday and told an NYPD cop there he had just been diagnosed with the potentially deadly coronavirus.
He left a short time later only to collapse nearby, on the traffic island at Park Ave. and E. 77th St., about 6:05 a.m. He died at the scene.
Chang started feeling like he was coming down with a cold about five days ago, and worried relatives had urged him to stay home, his family said.
"We can’t speak. This is a very difficult time. Please respect our family’s privacy,” Chang’s brother told the Daily News at the family’s Queens home Tuesday.
“It’s tragic. We extend our sympathy to his family,” said Ed Mullins, the president of the Sergeants Benevolent Association. “It’s almost like a science-fiction movie. This isn’t ending, and the impact of coronavirus is hitting the people who are closest to us.”
“This is a sergeant who was at the point where he was retired, and he should be enjoying himself,” Mullins added.
The city medical examiner will conduct an autopsy to determine the cause of death.