Durham bus attendant dies from COVID-19 while in quarantine

SPOKANE, Wash. — A Durham bus attendant in Spokane died from COVID-19 while in quarantine.

Last week, 10 positive COVID tests forced 36 Spokane-based Durham employees into quarantine. This affected several school routes, as roughly 20% of Durham’s 180 employees who worked with Spokane Public Schools were out.

“Sadly, we are heartbroken today to learn that one of our team members who was quarantining passed away,” said Durham communications manager, Edward Flavin. “Our bus attendant, whose name we will not share out of respect to their family, had reported to us a COVID positive test. Our thoughts and prayers go out to our team member’s family and friends in this very difficult time.”

Flavin said now 13 of their drivers have contracted COVID-19, and 11 drivers are currently in quarantine. According to Spokane Public Schools, all recently reported cases originated outside the workplace and are not knowingly linked to Durham’s buses.

Spokane Public Schools released a statement in response to the news on Thursday, saying in part:

“We were deeply saddened to learn of the passing of a Durham School Services employee, and our thoughts are with the employee’s family and friends during this very difficult time. Every individual who works with our students plays an important role in the work that we do as a district.”

RELATED: Positive COVID tests, exposures force 36 Durham employees into quarantine