WAYNE, NJ – During his daily coronavirus update, Mayor Chris Vergano introduced the co-founder of FLAG of Greater Wayne, Beth Marmolejas who gave an update on what the charity has done for local front-line workers since its inception.

Before Marmolejas was introduced, the Mayor had the grim duty of reporting the coronavirus numbers.

“I’m saddened to report an additional two deaths today,” said Vergano. “They were reported to us by the New Jersey Department of Health this morning. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family members at this time. The new report lists the following: a 79-year-old male passed on April 3rd, and an 88-year-old female passed on April 13th.

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I can also report that we've had an additional 17 positive new tests from today's results and the cumulative positive number is now at 646.

The new positive cases include:

  • Men: 8
  • Women: 9
  • Average Age: 67
  • Age Range: 21 – 91

Ten people are still being treated in local hospitals and the total number of Wayne residents, reported by the state, who have died due to Coronavirus complications is now 39.

Vergano then gave the hours of the Passaic County COVID-19 testing center at William Paterson University as 9am – 12pm Mondays and Tuesdays and Thursdays through Saturdays.  “You must have a doctor’s prescription and be a Passaic County resident,” he reminded the Township.

“They need volunteers to staff the program,” said Vergano of the testing site. “If you are able to assist in this vital program, email: volunteers@passaiccountynj.org.”

The Mayor then mentioned the Blood Drive that will be happening at the Wayne YMCA on Wednesday, May 13 from 10:00am – 4:00pm.  You must register before coming. To register, go to: www.redcrossblood.org and enter the sponsor’s name in the upper right corner, which is: ‘Wayne YMCA.’

“There’s a very big need for blood right now,” said Vergano.

“Many individuals, doctors and small businesses are emailing me with a list of items that they would like to donate to the town,” he said next. “We appreciate their donations of these much-needed items. I would like to thank Andrew Pikar, the developer of the new Kering Distribution Center at 150 Totowa Road for the donation of 500 N-95 masks to be used by our frontline workers. This is just another great example of all the people and businesses who are donating during this pandemic.”

Vergano announced that Wayne Day has been rescheduled to September 13, and the Township shredding event has also been rescheduled to June 20. He said that this will be a no-contact event where people will come to the back of your car and take what you want shredded from the trunk.

Vergano then introduced Marmolejas, who came to the podium to address the Township.

“We are incredibly proud of what FLAG, which stands for Front-Line Appreciation Group of Greater Wayne has done so far to support our front-line workers thanks to the generous donations from Wayne residents,” Marmolejas said with a smile.

“Our team’s mission is our guide,” she said. “Helping to feed and support our front-line workers during the coronavirus pandemic while also keeping our local and locally-owned restaurants in business.”

Marmolejas announced that they have received $67,887 in donations as of April 17 and have provided 2,497 meals to various frontline healthcare workers and first responders in and around Wayne. She then thanked all of the major donors to their cause.

“100% of the donations that are made to FLAG of Greater Wayne are used to provide meals to people working on the front lines,” said Vergano when he came back to the podium. “It’s a great cause.”

“I know it’s been a month now,” The Mayor said in conclusion, “And, it seems incredible. Who would have thought, in our lifetimes, that we'd be living this way? What is now the new norm: putting your mask on when you go outside; staying six feet away from people; staying in your house. It's the new norm, but it's what we have to do in order to get through this pandemic.”