The United States marked Memorial Day with somber ceremonies and, in many places, reopened beaches, as the number of coronavirus deaths inched closer to 100,000, according to NBC news' count.
President Donald Trump, who participated in a wreath-laying ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery, was also looking ahead to the Republican National Convention. Trump threatened on Twitter on Monday to move the event from Charlotte, North Carolina, if there is a chance the venue might not be filled there later this summer due to virus-related restrictions.
Meanwhile, Joe Biden appeared in public Monday for the first time in more than two months, laying a wreath to honor the fallen at a Delaware war memorial.
- MAPS: Confirmed cases in the U.S. and worldwide; confirmed deaths in the U.S. and globally
- Reopening America: See what states across the U.S. have already reopened.
- The coronavirus has destroyed the job market in every state. See the per-state jobless numbers and how they’ve changed.
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Joe Biden makes first public appearance in more than two months
Joe Biden appeared in public Monday for the first time in more than two months, laying a wreath to honor the fallen at a Delaware war memorial.
WHO temporarily halts trial of hydroxychloroquine over safety concerns
The World Health Organization announced on Monday that it's suspending a trial of hydroxychloroquine in treating COVID-19, saying fears of the drug's potential danger is causing it to "err on the side of caution."
The medication, best known for use against malaria and autoimmune disorders, has been touted as a possible answer to COVID-19 by President Donald Trump.
But WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said evidence has shown harmful side effects of hydroxychloroquine, including heart problems.
100-year-old World War II veteran released from hospital after recovering from COVID-19
A World War II veteran was discharged after spending 58 days in the hospital fighting COVID-19.
Lloyd Falk, 100, was admitted to Henrico Doctors’ Hospital in Richmond, Virginia, on March 24 as one of the hospital’s first COVID-19 patients. He had also lost his wife of 74 years to the virus. Despite all odds, he was released from the hospital on May 20 after making a full recovery.
In a video posted on the hospital’s Facebook page, health care workers can be seen lining the hallways and cheering as he is wheeled out of the hospital to begin his rehabilitation.
“We salute you, Mr. Falk,” the hospital wrote on Facebook. “Your courage and resilience inspires us all.”
New York's daily deaths back under 100
New York state coronavirus deaths were back under 100 on Sunday after a slight rise the previous day, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said in a Memorial Day news conference.
Ninety-six New Yorkers died from from COVID-19 on Sunday, 75 in hospitals and 21 in nursing homes, the governor said Monday. On Friday, the state’s 84 recorded deaths marked the first time New York saw under 100 deaths since late March, but the number had risen on Saturday to 109.
Trump says he's no longer taking hydroxychloroquine
President Donald Trump said he had "just finished" taking a two-week course of the antimalarial drug hydroxychloroquine, the medication he has vigorously promoted as a preventative or curative treatment for coronavirus, even as evidence piles up that the drug may cause more harm than good.
The president again defended his decision to take, and talk about, the unproven treatment in the interview, amid Food and Drug Administration warnings against using the drug for COVID-19 outside of hospital settings because of a risk of serious heart problems.
Bars and gyms reopen in Iceland
Iceland eased its national alert against the coronavirus on Monday, allowing for public gatherings of up to 200 people and night clubs and gyms to reopen as the country nears complete recovery from the outbreak.
The North Atlantic nation, which limited the virus spread through a meticulous test and trace strategy and a full lockdown, has confirmed 1,804 infections and 10 deaths. But there have been only five reported new cases in May, and more than 99 percent of infected people have recovered.
Iceland's alert level was lowered from "emergency phase" to "alert phase," the second of three stages, the government said in a statement on Monday.
Gyms can now reopen, though only at half capacity, while bars and restaurants can serve customers until 11 p.m., it said.
Austrian hospital performs first COVID-19 lung transplant in Europe
Doctors in Austria completed a lung transplant on a COVID-19 patient, the first to be done in Europe, the Medical University of Vienna said in a news release on Monday.
The procedure last week at Vienna General Hospital was performed on a 45-year-old woman from the southern state of Carinthia who had developed severe respiratory failure after contracting the virus approximately eight weeks ago.
Dr. Walter Klepetko, head of the Department of Surgery and the Division of Thoracic Surgery at the Medical University of Vienna, said the patient was previously healthy.
“We are very satisfied with the patient’s condition, given the extremely difficult initial circumstances,” Klepetko said in a statement released by the Medical University of Vienna. “Only a few days after the procedure, the patient is well on the way to recovery.”
Footage of packed pool party at Houston club draws criticism
A Houston club is under fire after footage surfaced of it hosting busy pool parties over Memorial Day weekend, despite state social distancing guidelines.
Video of a pool party on Saturday at Clé Houston, a club in the city’s Midtown, shows a crowded outdoor gathering with no masks in sight.
Trump threatens Republican convention move if NC limits attendance over coronavirus
As states struggle to contain the novel coronavirus that’s killed nearly 100,000 Americans, President Donald Trump threatened to move the Republican National Committee from Charlotte, North Carolina, if there is a chance the venue might not be filled there later this summer due to virus-related restrictions.
“Unfortunately, Democrat Governor, [Roy Cooper] is still in Shutdown mood & unable to guarantee that by August we will be allowed full attendance in the Arena,” Trump said in a string of tweets, adding that a decision must be made now because the preparations cost millions and supporters needed to be able to make their travel plans now.
“If not, we will be reluctantly forced to find, with all of the jobs and economic development it brings, another Republican National Convention site," he said.