THE daughter of a prominent pastor who died of coronavirus has thanked Chris Cuomo for helping to save her sister's life.
Bishop Gerald Glenn, a leader at New Deliverance Evangelistic Church in Richmond, Virginia, died on Saturday evening just days after testing positive for the virus.
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He had drawn criticism in the weeks before his death for continuing to hold services during the pandemic and for telling his congregation that God is "bigger" than the virus.
Four members of his family members have since tested positive, including daughter Margerie Crawley.
Speaking to Chris Cuomo, who has been hosting his CNN Prime Time show from his basement since contracting virus, Crawley said she believed Cuomo's decision to speak publicly about his own experience had helped her sister to recover.
"Thank you for sharing your story," she said.
"And doing your video about your exercises and all that you've gone through with this."
"Because I do truly believe it helped to save my sister when she started to get sick.
"She took hold of everything you said in your video.
"And it has been a true blessing for us to see you be so vulnerable in public.
"You have no idea how much that has helped our family."
As well as talking about the symptoms he has suffered, Cuomo earlier posted videos outlining home workouts for his viewers can do while in quarantine.
'IT BECOMES VERY REAL TO YOU'
Before Bishop Glenn had been diagnosed, footage shot on March 22 showed him telling his congregation: "Don't be afraid. Don't be neurotic.
"Yes, it's out there. But God is out there too.
"God is bigger than the virus. God is bigger than our struggle."
Just one day later, the state of Virginia banned gatherings of 10 or more people, but officials had already been urging the public to practise social distancing.
Crawley also used the interview to defend her father from the criticism he received after the footage emerged.
"He was very clear in posting signs and having hand sanitiser and… not congregating with people after service, during service.
"People were asked to seat six feet apart.
"There were a lot of people that were nervous and anxious, and he wanted to give them a message of hope."
Following Glenn's death, she also urged the public to heed official advice about social distancing.
"It becomes very real to you," she said.
"I just beg people to understand the severity and the seriousness of this, because people are saying it's not just about us, it's about everyone around us."
The coronavirus has so far infected more than 650,000 people and killed at least 28,500 across the US.
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