Former gubernatorial candidate Christine Hallquist shares story of battle against COVID-19

CLOSE

Christine Hallquist received an order to hunker down in New York after she tested positive for the coronavirus in early April. 

Hallquist, a gubernatorial candidate for Vermont in 2018, announced via Twitter that she received a positive test for COVID-19, the official name of the disease related to the coronavirus that first started to affect people at the end of 2019.

Hallquist made headlines a few years ago when she became the first transgender person in the United States to secure a major-party nomination for governor. She had traveled to New York to care for her 88-year-old mother, who she said has Alzheimer’s and is dying of cancer.

More: Christine Hallquist: An inclusive candidate and a ‘policy wonk’

More: Hallquist, reluctant LGBTQ role model, raises profile of trans identities

“The irony is I actually caught it in her retirement community,” she said. 

Hallquist experienced symptoms toward the end of March but said it didn’t occur to her that she might have the coronavirus until April 4, which is when she called the Onondaga County Health Department in New York. She got tested the next day at a drive-through site.  

She knew she had it, noting she couldn’t get out of bed and could barely make it to the bathroom in her sister’s Syracuse apartment. Her temperature regularly exceeded 101 degrees. Her lungs felt like they were on fire. 

By the time her positive result came on April 10, she started to feel better.

“If the test results were negative,” she said, “Then I would have been going to a hospital.”

She announced her result in order to be transparent with others, which she says traces back to her transition and efforts to live an open, honest life. Hallquist received an outpouring of support from others, including neighbors dropping off food. 

Now, she’s ready to get back to her schedule. 

“Today, it took me two hours to do my one-hour exercise routine,” she said. 

She’s used to running over four miles a day. At the same time, she knows she can’t delve back immediately because of her positive result. 

But things are looking up for her: She surpassed her three-day period being fever free and requested a lift of her isolation order on April 14. 

Contact Maleeha Syed at mzsyed@freepressmedia.com or 802-495-6595. Follow her on Twitter @MaleehaSyed89

All coverage of the coronavirus is being provided for free to our readers. Please consider supporting local journalism by subscribing to the Free Press.

Read or Share this story: https://www.burlingtonfreepress.com/story/news/2020/04/16/former-vermont-governor-candidate-christine-hallquist-recovers-coronavirus-new-york/5140506002/