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'It can happen to anybody' | 5 members of one St. Louis County family diagnosed with COVID-19

One of the patients is a teacher at a preschool where several other people were diagnosed

ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. — Five members of a St. Louis County family share one diagnosis: COVID-19.

Ryan Weinhaus said his wife Brittanie, his brother Jason and his parents have all tested positive and the disease has affected them each differently.

It started in mid-March when Ryan's mother Jane Weinhaus developed a cough.

"That's where it all started, with a cough, and next thing you know, it was not getting better," said Ryan, during an interview with 5 On Your Side's Mike Bush.

Jane, 63, spent days on a ventilator at Missouri Baptist Hospital. She is a teacher at Temple Israel's Deutsch Early Childhood Center, where other teachers and one parent tested positive. 

Monday, Jane was taken off the ventilator. Ryan said she had no previous health problems or preexisting conditions.

"We're still proceeding with caution and cautiously optimistic that she can remain off the ventilator during all of this," Ryan said.

RELATED: Everything we know about coronavirus in the St. Louis area

Jane's husband Michael also tested positive. He is two doors down in the ICU, hooked up to oxygen.

Ryan's brother Jason also developed symptoms, including fever, aches, shortness of breath and a cough.

"He's pretty much back to 100%, which is awesome," Ryan said. "He did go to the E.R. once, but he was never admitted to the hospital."

Still, Jason is in quarantine, away from his wife and two young kids.

Ryan, 32, said he and his wife developed similar symptoms and are recovering.

"I did not expect myself to test positive or to have some of these symptoms, but it can happen to anybody," Ryan said. "It's not just elderly individuals."

He has a message for the community.

"It's not even so much about you protecting yourself, but it's you protecting people on the outside as well," Ryan said. "So be smart. Stay stay in your house. You know, follow suit."

RELATED: What you need to know about the stay-at-home order issued by St. Louis city and county officials

Because the disease is so contagious, Ryan said family members have not been able to visit each other.

But, Ryan said he and his family have been flooded with support and he is thankful for the well wishes he has received.

"I'm so blessed to have the support system that we've had because these positive thoughts and prayers have really helped us tremendously over this stretch," Ryan said.

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