‘One of Bayonne’s most prominent clergymen’ is 11th COVID-19 death, 325 active cases

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Described as “one of Bayonne’s most prominent clergymen,” Rev. H. Gene Sykes – the pastor of Friendship Baptist Church – is the city’s 11th COVID-19 death, with 325 active cases and approximately 30 people recovered, officials said.

Rev. H. Gene Sykes. Facebook photo.

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

“He was well-known in the community for his spiritual and civic accomplishments. Rev. Sykes will be remembered for moving his congregation to a new location, where he renovated and expanded a former synagogue,” Mayor Jimmy Davis said in a statement, referring to Sykes as “one of Bayonne’s most prominent clergymen.”

Davis also noted that the church established a soup kitchen, one of many initiatives that served the entire community, and that Sykes also served as a commissioner on the Bayonne Housing Authority – a volunteer post.

“During my time as mayor, I have been fortunate to have the friendship of Rev. Sykes, as I valued and respected his counsel. On behalf of the City of Bayonne, I would like to offer our condolences to his family, friends, and congregation.”

According to the city’s Office of Emergency Management, there are now 325 active coronavirus cases in Bayonne, with about 30 recovered, and approximately eight percent of patients are being treated at the Bayonne Medical Center.

This afternoon, the New Jersey Department of Health announced that there are 44,416 positive COVID-19 cases across the state, including 4,949 cases in Hudson County – along with 103 deaths.

Both totals are the third most in New Jersey when measured by county.