PRINCETON — Both COVID-19 deaths in Mercer County happened at the Princeton Health Care Center and contact tracing has shown the source of the virus in the facility was Myrtle Beach, S.C.

Gov. Jim Justice said Wednesday afternoon during his pandemic briefing that a 79-year-old and an 87-year-old, both females, were residents of the nursing home.

Everyone at the nursing home, residents and staff, were recently tested.

“We tested everybody there,” Justice said of those recent tests. “Now we are going through retesting. Two people died that quickly.”

Justice said 23 staff and 19 residents have tested positive at the facility and “now two are dead.”

“This thing moves and can move very quickly,” he said.

Bill Crouch, secretary of the Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR), also said Wednesday afternoon that evidence from contact tracing at the facility shows the virus came from travel to Myrtle Beach.

Contact Charles Boothe at

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