Perry County Sheriff returns to work after COVID-19, other health issues

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TELL CITY, Ind. (WEHT) – A Tri-State sheriff is back on the job, nearly two months after testing positive for COVID-19, and suffering other health issues.

Perry County Sheriff Alan Malone is on duty on a limited basis as he continues to recover.

“I got sick and I learned that I got COVID,” he said, describing what happened around the time he fell ill around the New Year’s holiday.

“I developed some more symptoms as far as headaches, and I became very, very sick.,” said Sheriff Malone.

He said doctors told him he became diabetic after doing some tests. Sheriff Malone says he’s never been diabetic before his positive COVID-19 test, but is no longer insulin dependent and on medication. He first went to Perry County Memorial Hospital, then to Owensboro Health for treatment, separated from his family and law enforcement family.

“What that was like, not being able to see my family, my co-workers was very, very hard,” he said.

“We had visited him once at the hospital from the parking lot in Owensboro,” said Chief Deputy Eric Dickenson, describing one visit where officers flashed their cruisers lights in the parking lot for the sheriff to see.

His ordeal with COVID-19 grew after suffering a stroke, and being taken to a Louisville hospital.

“I had no idea what was really going on. I knew that prior to that I became very, very sick, but I’ve never experienced any type of stroke symptoms,” Sheriff Malone recalled.

“My wife and I had to have a moment for a second, and had to pray,” added Chief Deputy Dickenson.

He was released last month, and was able to see family again, with dozens from his law enforcement family welcoming him back.

“I was very, very happy to see them. It’s been over 30 days since I’d seen any of them, but it’s something I’ll never forget what they did for me,” he said.

Sheriff Malone also got hundreds of cards from around the county wishing him a speedy recovery. He says he’s continuing his therapy in Louisville, and is only working 16 hours a week. He’s thankful for his deputies stepping up while he was gone.

“They knew I was sick, they knew to continue, that I the job I had to do and I was very proud of the job they did for me,” Sheriff Malone says.

He’s also thankful for the county’s support for him and his family.

“The amount of support I received from Perry County was something I will never forget,” says Sheriff Malone.

(This story was originally published on March 2, 2021)

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