A couple in Maine, America hosted a small, rustic wedding celebration for 65 of their closest family and friends in early August. This event started a massive COVID-19 outbreak that, to date, has infected 176 people and contributed to the deaths of seven people who were not even in attendance.
In mid-August, the Maine Centre for Disease Control and Prevention opened an investigation into a COVID-19 outbreak associated with the wedding reception at Big Moose Inn in Millinocket on August 7. According to state officials, guests did not follow social distancing and mask guidelines. The event also violated an executive order that has limited indoor gatherings to 50 people.
At the time, a total of 24 individuals associated with the event tested positive for COVID-19. Of that total, Maine CDC had identified 18 individuals who attended the reception and 6 others who had close contact with reception attendees. All of the confirmed cases were Maine residents.
Speaking during a virtual press briefing, Maine CDC Director Nirav D. Shah stated that this number has since risen to 176 and resulted in seven deaths. Six of the deaths occurred at the Maplecrest Rehabilitation and Living Center in Madison, Maine.
“More generally, related to the Millinocket wedding events, I mentioned there have been 176 cases, and including now, the six individuals who have passed away at Maplecrest. A total of seven individuals, who have passed away with COVID-19, resulting from and related to the August 7 wedding in Millinocket.”
None of the six individuals from the rehabilitation centre had attended the wedding, although a staff member from the facility did.