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Wed Apr 1, 2020, 01:45 PM

The Life and Death of Juan Sanabria, One of New York City's First Coronavirus Victims

At 860 Grand Concourse, a residential apartment building in the Bronx, the doorman’s post is just inside the front door, on a landing between two flights of stairs. One of them leads up to the offices of a dentist and a lawyer, who, along with several physicians, rent commercial space. The other leads past two pairs of gold-painted columns into the main lobby, where an elevator services seven floors with a hundred and eleven apartments. Tuesday through Saturday, between eight in the morning and five in the evening, tenants coming up or down from the lobby could expect a greeting from a trim, punctilious man with close-cropped hair. He wore a navy-blue uniform that hung loosely off his narrow shoulders. His name was Juan Sanabria.

There was an art to Sanabria’s salutations. Dana Frishkorn, who’s lived in the building for three and a half years, appreciated that he called her by her first name when she entered, and never failed to tell her “Take care” when she left. Yet somehow Sanabria knew that Anthony Tucker, who has spent five years in the building, preferred to be called by his last name. “Hey, Tuck,” Sanabria would say, extending his hand for a fist bump. When Tony Chen, who runs a boutique tour company and lives on the seventh floor, limped into the building one morning, addled by plantar fasciitis, Sanabria showed him a foot stretch that helped. On another afternoon, when a tenant showed up at the front door with a large couch to take up to his apartment, even though the building’s rules mandated the use of a side door, Sanabria stood watch to make sure a meddlesome neighbor didn’t wander over.

Uncharacteristically, Sanabria wasn’t around the last week of February. His eighty-two-year-old mother, with whom he shared an apartment on Ogden Avenue, was suffering from emphysema; he’d been taking her to a nearby hospital. When word got around the building that Sanabria’s mother was ill, no one was surprised to learn that he was by her side. “It was who he was,” Jimmy Montalvo, one of the other doormen, told me. Montalvo and Sanabria were neighbors—Montalvo got his job at the building through Sanabria, three years ago—and frequently had breakfast together at their corner bodega; Sanabria was always bringing food back for his mother, Montalvo said. “He took good care of her.” Even when Sanabria was away from 860 Grand Concourse, during a break or on his days off, he gave the impression that he was never far. James Tirado, the youngest and newest doorman on staff, used to get calls and texts from Sanabria, checking up on him. “How’s the day going?” Sanabria would ask. “Is everything going O.K. for you?”

By the time his mother’s health had improved, and Sanabria returned to work, on March 3rd, he was beginning to feel ill himself...

https://www.newyorker.com/news/postscript/the-life-and-death-of-juan-sanabria-one-of-new-york-citys-first-coronavirus-victims


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Reply The Life and Death of Juan Sanabria, One of New York City's First Coronavirus Victims (Original post)
BeyondGeography Apr 2020 OP
LastDemocratInSC Apr 2020 #1
marble falls Apr 2020 #2

Response to BeyondGeography (Original post)

Wed Apr 1, 2020, 02:26 PM

1. Thank you for the link to the story. All I can do now is just look out the window.

I can't say why.

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Response to BeyondGeography (Original post)

Wed Apr 1, 2020, 04:34 PM

2. We really need to get faces on a lot more of these "statistics". Thanks for posting this.

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