Thai Chef Dies of Coronavirus in New York City: Reports

A group of visitors from Philadelphia wear masks as a precaution to the coronavirus, Wednesday, March 11, 2020, in New York's Times Square. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

BANGKOK — A Thai cook in New York City died after being infected with the novel strain of coronavirus, according to online accounts.

The man, identified as Anupongse Wongserat, 53, became the second Thai national to die from the virus in the United States. Anupongse is described as a head chef at a Thai restaurant in New York.

The news was posted online by New York-based Facebook user Punyadech Photanatham, a friend of the deceased, and reported by Thai-language Facebook account called “Thais in New York” early Friday.

Anupongse is said to have a preexisting condition of diabetes before he tested positive for coronavirus. The hospital reportedly gave him some medicines and he was told to go home, where he later died.

“I am so heartbroken,” his friend Punyadech wrote online. “People, stay the fuck home. Take quarantine seriously. It’s not a vacation. It’s not a joke. I will miss him so much.”