‘Grim Reaper’ takes COVID-19 message to Jacksonville beaches

Coronavirus

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (CNN Newsource) – A lawyer in Florida has been traveling all over the state, dressed as death himself, warning people of the coronavirus.

Attorney Daniel Uhfelder has run into a lot of skeptics, some who question him, others who scream at him, but he keeps going.

“I look forward to not having to go to these places,” Uhfelder said.

He began his tour in March, when COVID-19 started to spread in Florida. Today, he says the numbers are even worse than he expected.

“Jacksonville was on my list because it was one of the first cities to open the beaches,” Uhfelder said.

With six feet of distance, and a mask and gloves, he blames a lack of government response locally, across Florida and the nation.

“I hope people heed this warning, being safe, wearing masks, not congregating in small places,” Uhfelder said. “Cancel this ridiculous convention.”

He’s talking about the Republican National Convention, scheduled to be in Jacksonville next month, despite the city having some of the highest growth rates of the virus in the country.

“Our government has failed us,” Uhfelder said. “Our government has failed us in every front.”

His views often get pushback on the beaches he visits.

“Obviously it’s not the flu, but I don’t think it’s so much more severe than the flu,” a woman told him on a Jacksonville beach.

“Coming out here dressed as the Grim Reaper saying you’re dead for being out here, I think that’s a little bit much,” Marine Corps Veteran James Rivera said. “Let’s not give everything up because we’re sick. As crazy as that sounds, it’s a bit too much.”

Uhfelder says he loves the beach, but worries about the people who head there and then gather nearby in restaurants, hotels, and stores without masks.

“I hope that one day I don’t do this anymore myself,” Uhfelder said. “There’s mixed emotions, it’s a free country but I think this is necessary.”

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