A paramedic who works for the Flanders Northampton Volunteer Ambulance Corps is fighting for his life after catching COVID-19. Jeff Alt’s friends and co-workers from across Suffolk County, where he has volunteered and worked in emergency medical services for the last 20 years, are raising money for him and his family since bills are piling up.
The 40-year-old has been on a ventilator for five days as of Monday morning, May 4. He developed double pneumonia and diabetic ketoacidosis due to the novel coronavirus, according to ambulance chief Mark Dunleavy. Alt has worked there full-time for the past two years while also giving his time to Center Moriches, Westhampton, and Gordon Heights. He has a long list of ambulance agencies he has been affiliated with over the years.
“Jeff is an asset to the Flanders ambulance and the community of Flanders, Riverside, and Northampton,” Dunleavy said. “We pray for a speedy recovery for him, and we stand ready to assist the family in any needs.”
Alt lives in Mastic with his wife and young daughter. He is an ex-captain with the Middle Island Fire Department, where he once volunteered.
An online fundraiser was set up by Tina Roberts last week, just as Alt was placed on a ventilator in the intensive care unit at Stony Brook University Hospital. In four days, the GoFundMe campaign raised more than $18,000, well surpassing the initial $10,000 goal, and donations were still coming in as of press time.
“While we remain optimistic and hopeful for a full, speedy recovery,” Roberts wrote, “we have to be realistic that this is a long road ahead for him and his family.”
“Jeff is a wonderful person, great friend, excellent paramedic to work with,” Richard Petracca wrote with his donation. “I love him and his family.”
“Jeff is a person this world needs,” Donald Quinn wrote, “right now and forever.”
Donations can be made at www.gofundme.com/f/help-for-jeff-alt.