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Indiana correctional officer dies of COVID-19, 1st reported in state

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — A 67-year-old correctional officer has died of complications from COVID-19, marking the first reported virus-related death of a correctional officer in Indiana.

Gary Weinke, 67, died Saturday, the Indiana Department of Correction said on Sunday night.

Weinke began his career at Wabash Valley Correctional Facility in 2007 as a stores clerk in the Commissary Department and later transferred to custody, eventually moving to the Special Confinement Unit, IDOC said.

His wife, Naomi Weinke, is also a correctional officer at WVCF. 

March 29 was Gary Weinke’s last day working at WVCF. Leadership at the facility later learned he had symptoms of the virus, and he tested positive. It was later reported to leadership at WVCF that he had symptoms of the virus and later tested positive for COVID-19, IDOC said.

Acting Warden Frank Littlejohn said in a statement, “Our condolences go out to his wife Naomi, his family, and his friends.  He was a one-of-a-kind officer who touched the lives of many of those that he worked closest with.  He will be truly missed.”