A beloved custodian who cleaned NYPD headquarters is the first member of the department to die from the coronavirus, officials said.
Dennis C. Dickson, a 14-year employee with the department, died Thursday at Kings County Hospital in Brooklyn, NYPD Police Commissioner Dermot Shea said in a statement.
Dickson, who was assigned to police headquarters in Manhattan, was remembered for spending 17 days there during superstorm Sandy, helping with cleanup operations, Shea said.
“Mr. Dickson was a revered member of the custodial staff,” Shea said. He noted that Dickson recently was “again on the front line cleaning and disinfecting 1 Police Plaza so that our personnel could be here safely, allowing them to continue to serve the people of the City of New York.”
Earlier this week, Shea said that since the pandemic hit the city, more than 3,000 officers had called in sick, about triple the usual number. On Thursday, 3,674 uniformed employees were out sick, about 10% of the department’s uniformed workforce, officials said. As of Thursday night, 294 uniformed and 57 civilian NYPD employees had tested positive for the coronavirus, police said.