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15-Year-Old Dar'yana Dyson's Death Linked To COVID-19, Officials Confirm

BALTIMORE, Md. (WJZ) -- Baltimore County officials on Tuesday confirmed the death of 15-year-old Dar'yana Dyson was linked to coronavirus.

Dyson died Saturday at Johns Hopkins Hospital where she was receiving treatment for an pediatric inflammatory disease that the CDC recently linked to COVID-19.

In a press release, Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski said it was the first pediatric death in the county associated with the virus, but Daryana also is the first child to die from this disease linked to COVID-19 in Maryland as well.


According to officials, the teen had Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C). The CDC recently linked MIS-C to COVID-19. . According to the state's department of health, Daryana was one of four of this cases in Maryland. The inflammatory syndrome has similar symptoms to Kawasaki disease and has been documented in children in DC, New York and other states.

"Any loss of life from this virus is tragic, but the loss of a child is devastating. Our prayers are with the family and loved ones of this young person," Olszewski said. "This is a stark reminder that this virus spares no one, and that we all must remain vigilant in our efforts to stay home, socially distance, and limit the spread of this deadly disease."

Dyson's aunt told WJZ Investigator Mike Hellgren it should serve as a wake-up call to young people that they are not immune.

"So no one else has to experience this type of pain and hurt that everyone that loves her is going through," she said. "We don't want her to go in vain. We want to be able to reach other youth."

Baltimore County officials reiterated that people should practice social distancing and wear masks when they can.

"The COVID-19 pandemic is real, it is here, and it is lethal," Dr. Gregory Wm. Branch, Baltimore County Health Officer, said. "Our children and our most vulnerable residents need all of us to do our part to safeguard them from this unrelenting adversary."

A candlelight vigil in her memory is set for Wednesday from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. in the O'Donnell Heights community. The family urged people to social distance during the vigil to celebrate her life.

For the latest information on coronavirus go to the Maryland Health Department's website or call 211. You can find all of WJZ's coverage on coronavirus in Maryland here.

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