South Fulton police chief urges public to follow CDC guidelines after contracting COVID-19

Sirens and flashing lights were on display during a special birthday drive-by celebration for South Fulton Police Chief Keith Meadows on Sunday. 

Chief Meadows told FOX 5's Deidra Dukes, "They came by, they surprised me. Even some of my neighbors came out and videotaped the event. It was very nice." 

There was added cause for celebration for the chief this year because he survived COVID-19. The 56-year-old contracted the coronavirus in October. His wife and 13-year old son also tested positive for the virus. 

"We were positively diagnosed with COVID-19. It was very devastating for our family. That's a difficult virus to undertake," said Meadows."

While no one in the family was hospitalized, Chief Meadows and his wife were seriously ill for about three weeks.  

Chief Meadows said, "That was three weeks quite frankly where you are going through a lot of pain, labor-intensive breathing, things of that nature."

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Eleven million confirmed cases of COVID-19 have been reported nationwide this year. Chief Meadows lost a family member to the deadly virus in the early months of the pandemic. 

"He was in his 90s had lived through wars and things of that nature and actually wound up dying of COVID-19. These sorts of things are devastating to families," said Meadows. 

More than a month after their initial diagnosis, the chief says he and his wife still experience the virus's lingering effects. With coronavirus cases on the rise, he urges the public to follow CDC guidelines.  

Meadows said, "This virus is very devastating, and it's really important as Atlantans and Americans we do our part to try to help reduce the spread of this virus."