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Colorado Mesa University students dies of COVID-19

Cody Lyster was a criminal justice major who played on the club baseball team.
Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. — A Colorado Mesa University student and club baseball player has died of COVID-19 complications, according to a letter sent to the campus by President Tim Foster.

9NEWS partner KKCO reports the victim, identified in the letter as Cody Lyster, was 21 years old. The university said Lyster did not contract the virus on campus, and it’s unclear if he was in Colorado when he died. If he was, that would make him the youngest victim of the new coronavirus pandemic in Colorado so far.

Lyster was pursuing a degree in criminal justice, something the letter said was a pursuit “following in his father’s footsteps.”

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“The professors, friends and teammates of Cody Lyster will miss him dearly,” the letter reads. “It is a sober reminder that we must do all that is in our power to stop the virus from unnecessarily impacting more Mavericks.

“Each time we make the sacrifice of social distance, or carry the burden of an everyday life that is changed, let us replace the statistics and headlines with the memory of Cody.”

The letter goes on to say that the fact Lyster contracted the virus outside of campus is a “painful reminder that even as students remain at home, and engage in remote learning, that certain risks remain for all people of all ages.”

Students can access counselors and support services remotely by contacting 970-644-3740, the letter says.

As of this writing, 40 people in Colorado under the age of 30 have been hospitalized with confirmed cases of COVID-19.

Two people in their 30s have died of the novel coronavirus in the state.

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