1st COVID-19 patient at Cape Canaveral Hospital returns to thank staff

Mark Twentyman survived medically induced coma, 29-day stay at Cape Canaveral Hospital

COCOA BEACH, Fla. – Cheering staff at Cape Canaveral Hospital Friday received a visit from who Health First officials said was the hospital chain’s first COVID-19 patient and survivor.

Mark Twentyman was in a medically induced coma, so the 69-year-old says he can’t remember his 29-day stay at the hospital or the staff he credits with saving his life.

Thirteen months later, Twentyman returned to thank his heroes.

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’'You remember me. I don’t really remember you,” Twentyman said as he addressed the room of doctors and nurses.

Long before a vaccine was available, Twentyman said the hospital used plasma to keep him alive. It was shipped all the way from Pennsylvania as he fought for his life.

“To see him here today, walking in and talking is amazing and the staff really came together as a group and a team,” nurse Angelic Dixon said. “I think every associate in the ICU had a hand in caring for him.”

Twentyman said he never thought he’d be able to stand again.

His outlook is much more positive now.

Since his recovery, Twentyman said he’s received his vaccines.

“Thanks to the Cape Canaveral staff for not giving up on me,” he said. “My message is, if you have any reason for hesitating, read my story if you can get a hold of it.”

Twentyman stays in Cocoa for the winter, so after meeting his lifesavers Friday, he said he’s ready to go back home to New York with a lot of gratitude and peace of mind.

About the Author:

James joined News 6 in March 2016 as the Brevard County Reporter. His arrival was the realization of a three-year effort to return to the state where his career began. James is from Pittsburgh, PA and graduated from Penn State in 2009 with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.