Woman dies from COVID-19 in outbreak linked to Maine wedding on Aug. 7

One person has died as a result of a COVID-19 outbreak that began at a wedding in Maine on Aug. 7, authorities said.

The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention said 32 positive cases of coronavirus have been linked to the wedding ceremony that was held at a church in East Millinocket and the reception that followed at the Big Moose Inn in Millinocket.

One of those who tested positive, an adult female patient at Millinocket Regional Hospital, died on Friday.

“We are sorry to share that this patient passed away early this afternoon,” Robert Peterson, the hospital’s chief executive officer, said in a statement Friday. “Our thoughts and sympathies are with her family as they cope with this difficult loss.”


Approximately 65 guests attended the Aug. 7 wedding ceremony at the Tri Town Baptist Church in East Millinocket and the reception at the Big Moose Inn in Millinocket, officials said.

Maine CDC officials said they delivered an imminent health hazard citation to the Big Moose Inn for exceeding the state’s indoor gathering limit of 50 individuals when it hosted the wedding reception. (Maine currently limits indoor gatherings to 50 people, and outdoor gatherings are limited to 100, with no more than five people per 1,000 square feet.)

The median age of confirmed positive cases linked to the wedding is 42 years old; those who have tested positive thus far range in age from 4 to 78 years old, Maine CDC officials said.

As of Friday, Millinocket Regional Hospital had tested 366 individuals for COVID-19; test results had been received on 263 and the remaining 103 tests were pending, hospital officials said.

“All positive patients have been contacted directly, given care instructions, and further instructed to quarantine,” Peterson said in the statement. “The CDC has initiated contact tracing on all positive patients to ascertain the full extent of the outbreak. As COVID positive individuals are still being identified in the community and the numbers continue to rise, the hospital has extended its no visitation policy and is limiting its services to essential medical care only through August 30th.”


Emily Sweeney can be reached at emily.sweeney@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @emilysweeney.