Michigan reports almost 2,500 COVID-19 deaths, including 5-year-old Skylar Herbert

By: - April 20, 2020 3:18 pm

This illustration, created at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), reveals ultrastructural morphology exhibited by coronaviruses | CDC illustration

There are now 2,468 people who have died of COVID-19 in Michigan.

A statewide coronavirus hotline is open 7 days a week from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 1-888-535-6136. Information can be found on the DHHS website or the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention website.

One of those deaths was 5-year-old Skylar Herbert of Detroit. She’s the first child with COVID-19 to die in Michigan. Until now, the youngest person on record to die with COVID-19 was 20, according to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer mentioned Skylar in her press conference Monday and noted her parents are first responders.

“I’ve reached out to the family and we’ve not connected yet. But I do know about the family. Her father who has spent 18 years on the front line as a Detroit firefighter and her mother, a Detroit police officer for 25 years, they’ve been on the front line, and they’ve served with honor and integrity, and they did not deserve to lose their child to this virus,” she said. “Nobody does. Nobody deserves to lose a child or a parent or a grandparent, or any loved one. And that’s precisely what’s at stake today. In every one of these, I try to pause to reflect on the lives that have been lost in this battle against a virus. But today’s was especially hard.”

There were 2,391 deaths reported Sunday. The state reports a case fatality rate of 8% as of Monday.

There are now more than 32,000 positive cases of COVID-19, as of 3 p.m. Monday, although state officials believe the actual number of cases is much higher. There were 31,424 cases on Sunday.


As of Monday, nearly 93% of Michigan’s 83 counties have cases and 57 have reported deaths.

COVID-19 is still hitting Southeast Michigan hard. Detroit, which is the only city in Michigan with its own health department, reported a total of 7,736 cases and 641 deaths on Monday. Combined with the rest of Wayne County, that brings the number to 13,912 cases.

Other counties reporting case numbers over 1,000 include Genesee County with 1,256 cases, Macomb County with 4,425 cases and Oakland County with 6,178 cases.

Sixteen more counties beyond that have reported at least 100 cases.


State numbers show that 3,237 people have recovered since last Friday. 

The first two cases of COVID-19 were reported in the state on March 10. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer declared a state of emergency that day.

Johns Hopkins University reports that there are more than 2.4 million confirmed cases worldwide and more than 168,000 deaths. In the United States, there are more than 766,000 confirmed cases and more than 40,000 deaths.

Advance reporter Allison Donahue contributed to this story.

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Madeline Ciak
Madeline Ciak

Madeline Ciak is a former Michigan Advance reporter. She’s a University of Michigan-Flint graduate and previously worked as a digital media manager at NBC25/FOX66 in Flint and a weekend producer at ABC12.