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Marion County Jail Nurse Dies From COVID-19

The Florida Channel
Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.

A nurse who worked for more than 12 years at the Marion County Jail has died from COVID-19.

Charles “Dan” Manrique, 71, died on Saturday. He was the night charge nurse at the jail.

Health care administrator Maria Torres said Manrique was experienced, dedicated and dependable.  

He had worked there since 2007 and joined Heart of Florida Health Center in April when the nonprofit took over medical services.

Torres said his co-workers are grieving and trying to compartmentalize their grief.

“It’s trying to tough it up right now,” she said. “I think it’s an attribute to any health care worker right now working at the front line.

Torres said Manrique’s family wants him to be remembered for more than COVID-19.

“Yeah, it was a tragic event due to COVID. But they want him to be remembered as the nurse that, even despite COVID, kept on providing services to the inmate population,” she said.

In a news release, Heart of Florida Health Center CEO Jamie Ulmer said: “Dan will be remembered as a HFHC HERO. He paid the ultimate sacrifice of taking care of others above all else.”

Torres said the jail had an outbreak and, at one point, had 237 positive tests, but with the precautions they have taken, that’s down to 22 active cases.