FILE - Coronavirus Outbreak

This undated electron microscope image made available by the U.S. National Institutes of Health in February 2020 shows the Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, orange, emerging from the surface of cells, green, cultured in the lab. Also known as 2019-nCoV, the virus causes COVID-19.

(The Center Square) – A 73-year-old Davidson County man has died from COVID-19, marking Tennessee's first death as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

Metro Public Health Department officials in Nashville said the man had underlying health issues.

“This is a tragic loss of life, and we extend our heartfelt condolences with the family,” Nashville Mayor John Cooper said Friday in a news release announcing the death. “Even though the majority of people diagnosed with COVID-19 have experienced mild symptoms, we know that the virus can be life-threatening, and we need everyone to take steps to protect themselves and each other.”

According to Metro Public Health Department officials, there have been a total of 110 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Nashville/Davidson County.

As of Friday, the Tennessee Department of Health reported 228 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the state. COVID-19 is a respiratory disease caused by a novel coronavirus.

The disease has caused at least 250 deaths in the U.S., with more than 19,600 confirmed cases in the country. COVID-19 symptoms appear within two to 14 days after exposure and include fever, cough, runny nose and difficulty breathing.

Most people who have it develop only mild symptoms. But some people, usually the elderly and those with other medical complications, develop more severe symptoms, including pneumonia, which can be fatal.

Regional Editor

Jason Schaumburg is an award-winning, veteran editor who has been a journalist for more than 20 years. He spent a decade as the top editor in three northern Illinois newsrooms for Shaw Media and Pioneer Press.