San Jose FoodMaxx to Close Temporarily After Coronavirus-Infected Employee Dies

The FoodMaxx grocery store off of Meridian and Parkmoor avenues in San Jose opted to close its doors for a week after the death of an employee with COVID-19.

Company spokeswoman Victoria Castro told San Jose Inside that the grocery chain decided to temporarily close the Parkmoor Avenue branch “out of an abundance of caution,” but that it’s due to re-open in just a few days.

FoodMaxx managers found out about the employee’s death on Saturday night, according to Castro, who said via email that the unnamed worker had fallen ill on a recent vacation and had not been in the store since March 6.

Santa Clara County public health officials “indicated no concern about the exposure for the customers or employees of the store,” Castro said. “However, FoodMaxx closed the store temporarily for cleaning and sanitizing and it will re-open in the coming days. The [county] signified the store can reopen when the company is ready to do so.”

The county Public Health Department did not return SJI’s request for comment.

Word of the death spread earlier today on Facebook, where people criticized the company for trying to keep employees from telling people about what happened.

“I’m in awe at how hushed they are about this,” one person commented. “The store is telling their employees to not say the real reason they closed. Please quarantine yourselves. Please get tested if you visited the FoodMaxx. Prayers up for everyone’s health. Prayers up for the families who are dealing with this tragedy.”

Jennifer Wadsworth is the former news editor for San Jose Inside and Metro Silicon Valley. Follow her on Twitter at @jennwadsworth.


      • After Nextdoor banned me from their platform for speaking Truth to Power it seems I have accumulated a network of loyal COVID-19 reporters which want to find a way to get the facts to the people.

        I am surprised at the stifling of information by not only the County but our Mayor. The job performance of our local government officials so far has been less than stellar in an unprecedented time of need.

        Our Nextdoor Group, “San Jose 2019-nCoV Virus (COVID-19)” has already been pirated by a Marcus Nishi. It seems he may want to siphon off the more than 1,280 members into a Group he actually named exactly the same as mine. At last count he had 31 members in the past 4 days of operation. He hasn’t posted anything in the last two days and what is there is cut and paste and some from my Group. I fault Nextdoor for allowing the censorship. The other wanabe types are a dime a dozen.

        Nextdoor allowed this and allowed him and one or two others to create havoc in our group. A tremendous amount of content was removed by Nextdoor it is a kind of censorship not seen before by myself in America.

        We have been adding content night and day since February 9th, 2020 when I recognized that County PHD kept closing the discussion on their Nextdoor announcements, once questions got too difficult.

        This was back in late January and early February. SCCPHD didn’t want panic so instead created a vacuum. Where information and education was much needed they had nothing. The reports coming out of Wuhan were nightmarish, especially that of the main crematorium. We could easily see this replicated here in the US. Especially on the West Coast as we are the first port of entry due to the fuel constraints of a Boeing 747.

        We posted a lot of content including warnings to the City which was continuing to have large venues. This included the Bernie Sanders Rally at South Hall involving 10,000 Bernie Fans. Rachel Maddow about half way into her interview with Bernie asked about the large rally crowds in San Jose and Los Angeles. His reply was that his campaign had reached out to Public Health officials and received the okay to go ahead with the rallies.

        This may be embarrassing for Sarah Cody. However, I also sent an email to the Sanders Campaign to please skip San Jose in light of the fact that San Jose was at Ground Zero for the CoronaVirus. They of course ignored my pleas. A post referring to the pleas, was taken down by someone that “knew people on his campaign” and then complained to Nextdoor. The content was removed.

        Later when it was evident that the Sharks were still selling tickets for the March 3rd, 5th, 7th, and 8th hockey games. I reached out through postings in the group to cancel the games. I included a Time Magazine cover of Larry Vaughn the “Mayor” in Jaws who kept the beaches open while being warned of a Great White lurking just below the surface.
        The parody to our Mayor was based unfortunately in fact as the games proceeded to attract crowds up to 17,000 people per game.

        As I now know, sounding the alarm can be punishing. But we must all endeavor to keep at it, our very lives depend on it.

        The County PHD employees which monitor our group may have got the word out as well. Sarah finally asked the Sharks not to play in front of Live audiences, but to televise the game instead.

        My pleas were finally answered on Monday March 9th, 2020 when Sara Cody announced that crowd sizes above 1,000 people were not allowed from March 11th through April 1st, 2020. The next Sharks’ home game was to be April 2nd, 2020.

        As mainstream news started to wake up to the seriousness of the viral spread, the governor actually put a size limit at 250 on March 12th, 2020. Thereby overriding a 1,000 person limit on crowd size which I again posted was far too many in my opinion. Now I believe we are at 100 or less in the county.

        Today we saw how a major corporation may have attempted to suppress the news for the sake of maintaining business. If we don’t all pitch in to educate the public now, then it will eventually be too late to come back from this.

        If the scenario that Gavin Newsom has put forth for not maintaining social distancing, then his prediction of 56% of Californians infected may very well come to pass.

        This scary scenario equates to a daily death count of 746 people in San Jose alone, in week six through eight of his scenario. This is based upon a CFR of 4.08% which is less that the current CFR worldwide, but was the CFR in Wuhan in early February.

        Over 700 daily funerals in San Jose alone would be an absolute nightmare. It would be a 24 fold increase in daily deaths in San Jose. These are serious times. I have never seen such potential for absolute catastrophe since the 1918-1919 Spanish Flu.

        We know that by getting the word out is our only chance at coming out of this with any resemblance of what our world once looked like. We have to educate the public. The young once though that they were somehow immune to serious symptoms caused by the virus. However as I write this I see it reported that 20-45 year olds now take up most of the hospital beds due to the Coronavirus. When whistling past the graveyard be extra careful of your step.

        Jennifer thanks for doing your part. Between yourself and the 1,280 members in the Group maybe we have a chance at spreading information and ideas. This can only save lives, including yours and mine. We are truly all in this together.


        • You’ve got way WAY too much time on your hands, sir. If only you’d put that energy and drive into something that’d actually make a difference or help in a manner that would actually be beneficial to the community .. what a shame.

          • That’s what he’s doing. I don’t know about this NextDoor drama and can’t necessarily endorse anyone’s side on it, but it sounds like Bruce was very prescient on what we should have been doing earlier to prevent the spread of this virus. Based on my impression from this post, he is the last person you should criticize for not trying to make a difference. I wonder what *you* have done and why you feel so comfortable criticizing others.

  1. Well, I rarely shop there, but I was there last week. Considering getting tested due to the fact that I saw almost all of the customers who were waiting in line standing maybe 1’ apart from each other. I used the self checkout which was way more practical than the regular line. I practiced social distancing and used my bleach rag to wipe down my cart, all my purchases, the computer touch screen, the credit card machine and back to my cart as I loaded my purchases back into my cart…

    • 1000 credit cards went INTO that machine. Eached handled by 1000 hands. The machine is a petri dish INSIDE. The world isn’t human friendly no matter how hard we try. Good that you take precautions though.

  2. People be real, there are people who have the virus and do not show symptoms. It is everywhere. Practice personal and general hygiene at all times. Act as if you have it and need to protect yourself and others. Do not go out if you do not have a reason to do so. I did my shopping this weekend because I wanted to avoid the panic shopping of last week and heavy crowds. I saw people taking their kids to the grocery as a family shopping. Go one at a time. Take this seriously! Try to be your very best while shopping around. People are already struggling to manage anxiety and other feelings. Mind your own business and go back to your place. Yesterday is gone. This is our today, and we have to do our best as community. Be cautious, positive, and kind at all times. Most importantly, be grateful for every moment.

  3. Good God Trump,……………….just stick to what you do best,,,,,,,,fuc*ing Stormy Daniels,……………get off the fuc(ing stage and parading around your stupid ignorance about something your ignorant mind knows nothing about……….

    • > Good God Trump,……………….just stick to what you do best,,,,,,,,fuc*ing Stormy Daniels,……………


      I think you’re mind is wandering.

      No one on this thread was talking about Stormy Daniels.

      Why did you want to bring her up?

  4. Hey hey hey hey calm down everyone… This is all going to go away in April when it warms up. Didn’t you hear Trump? Come on!

  5. Wow calm down Joe! Our President can only do so much ! Stay inside, wash your hands often, and just pray this virus goes away soon!

  6. Our president is a Moron. Wishing everyone the best of luck with this Awful virus. Stay clean healthy and be smart about s**t. Stop doing stupid shit. If we all do are part and stay home hopefully everything will be ok.

  7. OMG People, a person has died and the family is probably seeing these post. Have some respect and also it is ALL of our grocery workers who are filling shelves and waiting on people and handing dirty money All while they are working to make their ends meet, this could happen at any store. So show some respect. We all should be shopping with precaution .

  8. How true…it’s past the point of Trump basing, as good as that use to feel, now this virus has taken over everything. So be aware and be safe!

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