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Alabama mayor diagnosed with coronavirus dies as cases surge

Driver had been hospitalized since late June.

Posted: Jul 10, 2020 9:34 AM

CLANTON, Ala. (AP) - A longtime Alabama mayor diagnosed with the disease caused by the new coronavirus has died.

The Clanton Fire Department announced on its Facebook page Thursday that Mayor Billy Joe Driver had died while fighting COVID-19. The 84-year-old Driver served with the department before becoming mayor of the central Alabama town of 8,800 people in 1984.

Driver had been hospitalized since late June. His death comes as cases are increasing in the state as the virus spreads through communities.

More than 1,100 people are currently hospitalized statewide with the disease, and an increasing percentage of people are testing positive for the illness.

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