Saturday Night Live comedian Michael Che revealed his grandmother died Sunday night from the coronavirus. The stand-up comedian shared the news in an emotional Instagram post, saying he is "obviously very hurt and angry" he could not spend time with her due to social distancing guidelines. Che and the rest of the Saturday Night Live team have not filmed a new episode since March 7.
"Last night my grandmother passed away from the coronavirus," Che, 36, wrote on Instagram. "I'm doing OK, considering. I'm obviously very hurt and angry that she had to go through all that pain alone. But I'm also happy she's not in pain anymore. And I also feel guilty for feeling happy. Basically, the whole gamut of complex feelings everybody else has losing someone very close and special. I'm not unique, but it's still scary."
Che went on to joke about incorrect conspiracy and criticized the news media for continuing to share death tolls instead of telling people about "what they should be eating and what foods to avoid, so they'll be better prepared to fight this thing." He suggested if people could find time to watch the hit Netflix documentary Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness, they could find the time to learn about the dangers of fast food.
"I mean, if we can spend 6 hours watching some tweaker raise tigers, then we can spend a few minutes finding out how not to poison ourselves," Che wrote. "Right? Right. And to anybody that's lost someone to this virus like I have, I don't have to tell you how much it hurts. But just know that we will make it through this. But then again, maybe we won't! What do I know? This could be it! [I am] freaking out. It's like 1:30 p.m., and I still haven't been to sleep yet! See? Now I want a drink, but I can't, cause I just talked all that s— about taking care of yourself."
Che joined Saturday Night Live in 2013 as a writer, and briefly appeared on The Daily Show. He has co-hosted "Weekend Update" with Colin Jost since 2014 and is co-head writer for SNL. The series has not filmed a new episode since Daniel Craig hosted on March 7. The show was scheduled to return on March 28 with John Krasinski hosting, but production was suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Che is not the only celebrity whose life has been hurt by COVID-19, the respiratory illness caused by the coronavirus. Several have tested positive for the illness themselves, and a few have lost their lives. Country musician Joe Diffie died at age 61, just days after testing positive. Last week, Fountains of Wayne's Adam Schlesinger died from complications of coronavirus at age 52.
More than 1.3 million people have tested positive for the coronavirus around the world, reports Johns Hopkins University. In the U.S., more than 356,000 have tested positive, and more than 10,000 people have died. Resources on protecting yourself and what to do if you come down with smyptoms are available at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's website.