New Jersey coronavirus update: NJ cop who died of COVID honored by community with monthly blood drives

Coronavirus Update New Jersey
BEDMINSTER, New Jersey (WABC) -- One New Jersey woman's reason for giving plasma is deeply personal.

Both Brandi Patterson and her husband had COVID in April, however, he did not survive.

"When my husband got sick at the very last minute, he was able to get the convalescent plasma, but was too late," Patterson said. "But I wanted to make it my mission to donate as much plasma as I can to help the next person."

AlTerek Patterson, 38, was a beloved member of the Bedminster Police Department for 16 years -- a sergeant with a big heart.

"It really hurt the department," Detective Paul Piano said.

And now, the police department, his widow and the community come together to honor him, with monthly American Red Cross blood drives.

"When anyone has lost someone to this tragic virus and they know they can give back in a way that may not help their loved ones but can help another family, it does indeed put a special emphasis on the act of giving blood," said Rosie Taravella, CEO of the American Red Cross New Jersey region.

The need is urgent because since October, the demand by hospitals for COVID convalescent plasma is up 250%.

"The fact that he has never met half the people and they're doing this in his honor, it's a true blessing and it speaks of his character," Brandi Patterson said.

A devoted officer, a loving husband and father of 3, AlTerek Patterson didn't beat COVID, but his legacy will help others survive.

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