Three former Brophy College Preparatory classmates recently joined together to send donations to the Navajo Nation, which is one of the harder hit areas in regards to COVID-19.
Tim Moran, founder of Precado Capital; Andy Ingram, cofounder of Four Peaks Brewing Company; and Christopher Watts, CEO of Sunstate Equipment were the three Brophy alumni to team for the Navajo Nation, according to a press release.
Their efforts included collecting, packing and delivering pallets of items to the Navajo Nation, which covers land in northeast Arizona, southeast Utah and northwest New Mexico. The 2010 Census placed the nation’s population at 173,667.
The Navajo Nation has 4,253 confirmed cases with 146 confirmed deaths from COVID-19 as of May 20, according to the Navajo Department of Health. That works out to an infection rate of about 2,449 per 100,000 and a death rate of about 84 per 100,000. It also equals a 3.4% case-to-death rate among those infected.
By comparison, New York has about 1,841 cases per 100,000; New Jersey has 1,718 per 100,000; and Massachussetts has 1,307 per 100,000, according to Johns Hopkins University Center Systems Science and Engineering. As for deaths, New York has 148 deaths per 100,000; New Jersey has 124 per 100,000; and Connecticut has 100 per 100,000.
Health experts claim those in the Navajo Nation are at a higher risk of infection because they carry a higher rate of diabetes and hypertension. Experts also claim there is a higher chance of community spread since some Navajos don’t have the resources to self-isolate as the rest of the county.
In response to the pandemic’s effect on the Navajo Nation, Doctors Without Borders has sent a team to aid the reservation.
These numbers led the three Brophy alumni to rally up donations.
Other organizations such as Brophy, PurM+D and Phat Scooters, as well as the general public, joined the three companies and donated non-perishable food, bottled water, toiletries and hand sanitizer.
To make the 12-pallet delivery, the three classmates departed from the Valley at 4 a.m. Monday, May 18, in the dark. They drove a rented truck from Ryder, which donated 800 miles to the effort.
After about a five-hour drive, they dropped off the donated items to the Window Rock Wellness Center. They then traveled about five hours back to the Valley that same day, returning in the dark, at about at 7 p.m.