PEMBROKE PARK, Fla. – The coronavirus pandemic has hit very close to home as eight members of the Local 10 News family have tested positive for COVID-19 this week.
Among those who have tested positive for the virus are Local 10 evening anchor Nicole Perez and her husband, reporter Roy Ramos. Anchor Louis Aguirre has also tested positive.
None of the three are certain how or where they contracted the virus.
Perez and Ramos are feeling the common COVID-19 symptoms, including loss of taste and smell, chills and fatigue.
During an interview with her co-anchor, Calvin Hughes, Monday night, Perez said she and Ramos got tested at a Walgreens rapid testing site around 4 p.m. that day.
She said they received their positive results via a phone call around two hours later.
“It was just a slight cough,” Ramos said about his initial symptoms. “That cough then turned to a runny nose, then congestion. (I’m) starting to feel aches and pains and chills.”
Aguirre, on the other hand, has not felt any symptoms but wasn’t shocked to hear about his diagnosis because he came into contact with coworkers who were infected.
“I’m feeling great. 100%. No symptoms at all,” Aguirre said in an interview with Hughes and co-anchor Alex Finnie on Tuesday evening. “I’m hoping that I’m one of the lucky ones that gets to experience a mild case of this, but I’m ready for whatever this ride is.”
Aguirre said he plans to document and share details about his experience with COVID-19.
“I’m going to try to stay connected to my work and our viewership, through social media, as much as possible and document my experience because that’s so important,” he said.
Perez said she was surprised to learn of her diagnosis.
“It’s hard to say where I got it from, but when I got the results I was really sad,” she said. “I cried. I wasn’t expecting it at all. I really was upset. I don’t know how it happened.”
Ramos said the couple plans to quarantine for the next 14 days.
“Hopefully, we’ll both be back sooner than later,” he said.
“I would say to everyone out there, young, old, whoever you are, whatever you do for a living, take the proper precautions,” Perez added. “Wear the masks, wash your hands.”
Workers were back at Local 10′s studios Monday night to disinfect our newsroom, as well as throughout the building.
Most of our producers, writers and technical directors who you don't see and who help put together our newscasts on a daily basis have been working remotely from home for months now.
For those who must come to work, their temperature is taken as soon as they enter the building and everyone must keep a safe distance from each other and wear a mask at all times.
Those who have interacted with someone who has tested positive for the virus are not permitted to be in the building for 14 days.
Hughes was on vacation last week so he has not had contact with his co-anchor for more than 10 days.
The pandemic has placed some tough limitations on our staff, and so, for the next several days some familiar faces are going to be missing in action. But make no mistake, our news team is committed to covering every story that matters to you every day.