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Shirley Heath, wife of Warm Springs Chief Delvis Heath, dies due to coronavirus.

Three people from Jefferson County have died due to COVID-19, the Oregon Health Authority reported Tuesday, July 28.

The community of Warm Springs also announced its first death attributed to COVID-19 last week.

"It is with great sadness and sorrow that this report announces our first COVID-19 passing," said a press release from Louie Pitt Jr., the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs' director of government affairs and planning.

"Shirley Stayhi Heath, wife of Warm Springs Chief Delvis Heath and Yakama Tribal Member, passed on July 23, 2020. Coronavirus-19 was the cause of death.

"She was a beloved mother, grandmother and adviser to her husband. Her youth was spent in Celilo Village and moved to Warm Springs reservation after marrying Mr. Delvis Heath. The Warm Springs community was blessed with her care and love for her tribal people."

It is not clear which county Shirley Heath's death is being counted in, but she was tested by Warm Springs Health & Wellness Center, Pitt said.

A 77-year-old Jefferson County woman tested positive for COVID-19 on June 30 and died Thursday, July 23, at St. Charles Bend. The presence of underlying conditions is being confirmed, according to the Oregon Health Authority.

A 64-year-old Jefferson County woman tested positive on July 14 and died Monday, July 27. The location of her death and presence of underlying conditions are being confirmed, according to OHA.

An 82-year-old Jefferson County woman tested positive on July 20 and died Sunday, July 26. The location of her death is being confirmed. She had underlying medical conditions, according to OHA.

The Warm Springs Health & Wellness Center has had 165 total positive COVID-19 tests of 1,851 total, as of 4:45 p.m. Monday, July 27. Of the positive cases, 109 have recovered. Sixteen people have been hospitalized, and six have been discharged, according to Michele K. Miller, the center's deputy CEO.

"If we want to stop the spread of the virus in the community, we need to stay home, especially when instructed by medical staff," said Katie Russell, the Tribes' community health services manager. "Wearing a face mask when around others is helpful, but staying away from people outside of the house is a better way to stop the spread of the virus. It is up to you to keep our community safe. Working together we can stop the spread of this virus and save lives."

The total number of positive COVID-19 cases on Monday, July 27, in Jefferson County was 267; with 471 in Deschutes County and 33 in Crook County. Deschutes County reported four deaths, including one not yet reported by the Oregon Health Authority, and one death in Crook County. Of Jefferson County's positive cases, 45% have recovered, according to the Oregon Health Authority. The county's infection rate is 112 cases per 10,000 population, the fifth highest in the state and nearly three times the statewide total of 40.3 per 10,000.

Umatilla County has the highest number of infections per 10,000 population, with 212.3, followed by Morrow County at 197.1, Malheur County at 182.3 and Union County at 143.4.


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