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Barber Dies From COVID-19 After Accepting Clients During Pandemic

Eugene Thompson - curtting hair (Instagram)

Eugene Thompson – at work, curtting customer’s hair

In Mississippi, a beloved barber has died from COVID-19/coronavirus after he didn’t shut down and continued to accept clients while the epidemic rages.

The barber, Eugene Thompson, 46, of Brookhaven, Mississippi, died last Saturday (April 4), less than a month after testing positive for the novel disease.

In a March 17 post on Facebook, Thompson, the ambitious owner of the Taper Nation and Taper Nation 2 barbershops, first admitted he’d fallen ill. At that point, he closed the doors to his business for the remainder of the week.

“Quarantine yourself stay away from people…places.. or things…I felt a little [achy]… fever was a little high so I came to get checked,” Thompson wrote at the time. “Tapernation will be closed for the rest of the week…well deserved rest and relaxation..”Eugene Thompson - quarantine

Interestingly, his post came hours after he shared the following warning to potential clients seeking cuts:

PSA: Due to the coronavirus TaperNation will only be accepting clients that are ONLY receiving a service until further notice… SO if [you’re] not receiving a service … don’t come !!”

After days of fighting for his life, he died less than a week after his 46th birthday.

“He couldn’t get up and walk to the car, not walk around the house cause he couldn’t do that anyway,” sister Dedra Edwards told a local outlet. “At 12:22 p.m. the nurse practitioner in the ICU at St. Dominic called me and said his heart stopped and we couldn’t revive him.”

“Our last memory of him is getting on the ambulance,” she added. “We weren’t able to say goodbye, he was alone my brother was all by himself.”

Thompson was also a role model to young fatherless boys.

“There’s a lot of people, kids and adults that he cut for free that didn’t have the money and I was one of them,” longtime client Shanta Harris told WLBT News.

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Comment by AA on April 12, 2020 at 5:02pm

I understand the loyalty to your customer and the need to provide for you and your family. But with the seriousness of lost of life to thousands. It's not worth it to lay your life on the line to cut hair. They can wait. Sadden that this man had no choice but to continue to cut hair hoping he would not get the virus. Condolences to his customer family and friends. RIP This is another horrible time that will go down in history. It's horrible out there and its so sad that we as a people get the worse of everything that goes around in this world. This is why we need to listen, look out for one another and stop the hate and killing of our people. This is another wake up call for us to finally come up out of this coma we are in. Wake up Family!!!! Wow! It's heart breaking to hear read and watch the loss of lives. 

Comment by Robert on April 11, 2020 at 6:30pm
Is a hair cut worth risking your life?
Comment by Robert on April 11, 2020 at 6:25pm
@unell Mitchell I understand what you're saying but is it worth one's life? what price is your life worth?
Comment by unell mitchell on April 11, 2020 at 6:01pm

Some of you guys on here are heartless. We have people out there that will have no income if they just stay home and know one knows how long this situation will continue and you call it greed or something else. 

Comment by Mnyama on April 11, 2020 at 5:37pm
There is a barber in Memphis who shows himself all over social media going to people's houses giving cuts. I have another barber friend who is making houss calls too. They are not stopping the cutting..
Comment by Jeffrey L Donovan on April 11, 2020 at 4:41pm

A few dollars cost him his life

Comment by caribmama on April 10, 2020 at 6:10pm


Comment by stephen myers on April 10, 2020 at 12:49pm

And you had stupid dumb ignorant Black people saying because of skin pigmentation Black people will be immune to this virus, oh, Darwin kicks in and you die.

Comment by vaughn mitchell on April 10, 2020 at 11:10am
See what greed does to you, the virus does not care if your black or white. You see in social media, some black people not listening
Comment by Melinda Thompson on April 10, 2020 at 1:16am
He knowingly slow-walked to his death.

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