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UPDATE: Pastor, daughter discharged from hospital
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UPDATE: Pastor, daughter discharged from hospital

From the ICYMI: Here are the most-read stories from the past week series

A local pastor who spent around three days in an area hospital after experiencing symptoms in line with the coronavirus is heading home after being discharged Sunday afternoon.

Jeff Spencer, a pastor at New Hope Missionary Baptist Church in Hobart, posted about his experience after he was admitted Friday. His wife, Darlene Spencer, was taken to Community Hospital in Munster Wednesday. His daughter, Sami Mead, also went to the hospital Sunday after experiencing shortness of breath, but was ultimately discharged.

Jeff Spencer and Mead were sent home to be self-quarantined until test results come back and symptoms are gone.

Darlene Spencer was one of the first two COVID-19 cases identified in Lake County. Jeff Spencer has been posting updates on his wife's condition, saying Friday she was in critical condition. He also noted her oxygen levels have been dropping low. She remains in isolation.

In a March 18 public Facebook post, Jeff Spencer announced that his wife was sedated on a ventilator and her kidneys were failing. Her breathing is being assisted with oxygen. She was hospitalized March 15.

"I love her and just had to make the most difficult decision of my lifetime," Jeff Spencer wrote. "Her doctor and nurse came down to the ER to tell me my wife is taking a turn for the worse and that if her heart stops, they are not going to restart it. Please pray for my children and extended children along with all of our grandbabies during this difficult time."

A fundraiser was set up Wednesday by Deborah Page, of Hobart, for Jeff and Darlene Spencer called “Pastors Jeff’s wife in ICU with Coronavirus,” which Jeff Spencer has shared on social media. The fundraiser has surpassed its $5,000 goal.

Earlier Sunday, Jeff Spencer went on Facebook Live to update his social media audience about his condition, as well as his wife's and daughter's statuses.

"We're just going to trust God to do what God can do," he said. "I just want to say thank you to all who have been praying and who continue to pray and continue to support me and my family through this difficult time.

"There are others just like me throughout the world that are struggling that are having families that are sick. They need our prayers as well. Pray for all that are involved in this. Pray for our health care workers and those that have been on the front lines, placing their own lives into jeopardy so they can take care of us and make us better."

Jeff Spencer updated his audience in the video that his wife's oxygen levels were being kept steady and low and she would go through another round of dialysis.

"If He chooses it's time for my wife to go home, and He leaves me here to my dying breath, I'm going to preach God's love, God's mercy and God's grace," Jeff Spencer said. "I'm going to watch lives be changed because of what my wife has done and how she has worked in my life, and how she demonstrated the love of Christ to me and others as well."

Gallery: World responds to threat, reality of coronavirus

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