WASHINGTON — A friend and donor to President Donald Trump who the president had said was in a coma and seriously ill after becoming infected with the coronavirus has died.

Stanley I. Chera’s death Saturday was reported by The Real Deal, which covers the New York real estate industry. The publication cited unidentified sources who have worked with Crown Acquisitions, the firm Chera founded and ran. Chera was in his late 70s.

A White House official on Sunday confirmed Chera’s identity and ties to the president. The official spoke on the condition of anonymity to share details about Trump’s personal friendships.

Trump had spoken at recent White House briefings about a friend who had fallen ill with the virus, which has killed more than 20,600 Americans as of midday Sunday, according to Johns Hopkins University.

Trump first spoke about his friend as he described the “viciousness” of the disease on March 29.

“I had a friend who went to a hospital the other day. He’s a little older, and he’s heavy, but he’s tough person,” Trump said. “And he went to the hospital, and a day later, he’s in a coma. … He’s not doing well.”

“The speed and the viciousness, especially if it gets the right person, it’s horrible. It’s really horrible,” he said.

Author: Darlene Superville

Source: Washington Times: Trump’s developer friend dies from coronavirus