RALEIGH, N.C. — The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services is reporting the first COVID-19 associated deaths.

State health officials say a person from Cabarrus County died on March 24 from complications associated with the virus. The patient was in their late seventies and had several underlying medical conditions. A second person in their sixties, from Virginia who was traveling through North Carolina, also died from COVID-19 complications. 

“We extend our deepest sympathies to the families and loved ones. This is a stark warning that for some people COVID-19 is a serious illness. All of us must do our part to stop the spread by staying at home as much as possible and practicing social distancing,” said Governor Roy Cooper.

As of Wednesday morning, more than 500 people in North Carolina have tested positive for the virus, according to NCDHHS. 

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