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FARMINGTON — Hundreds of people lined Maple Street in front of San Juan Regional Medical Center on June 14 to welcome home and pay respects to a paramedic who died of COVID-19.

Glovis Foster had dedicated his life to helping other people. He was a member of the New Mexico Army National Guard for 16 years. He spent more than 25 years as a paramedic in San Juan County, including with San Juan Regional Medical Center AirCare.

He was hospitalized with COVID-19 in May and flown from Farmington to Lovelace Medical Center in Albuquerque, where he died in the hospital on June 12.

A GoFundMe set up to pay for his medical bills has since been changed to help pay for his funeral expenses.

His family brought his body back to Farmington on June 14, but they did not travel alone. First responders and motorcyclists accompanied them in the procession to honor a man who had saved countless lives.

As the procession neared Farmington, the AirCare helicopter left San Juan Regional Medical Center and flew to join the caravan.

San Juan County Fire Department brought two ladder trucks to the front of the Emergency Department entrance at San Juan Regional Medical Center. They raised the ladders and hung a large American flag between the two trucks.

The procession drove under the flag while a musician played the bagpipe and the AirCare helicopter flew overhead.

San Juan Regional Medical Center employees stood outside in scrubs to welcome him home. Some held signs thanking him. Many people carried American flags.

The procession included American flags, the Army National Guard flag and the Navajo Nation flag.

The majority of the people who waited at the hospital for the procession wore masks to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

Hannah Grover covers government for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4652 or via email at hgrover@daily-times.com.

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