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COVID-19 survivor says passion for classic cars helped him during recovery

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FORT MADISON, Iowa. (WGEM) -- Gerald Krogmeier said he has always loved classic cars that stand the test of time. He calls them survivors and considers himself a survivor too.

This time last year, Gerald was in the hospital being treated for COVID-19. His wife, Kim Krogermeier, said the outcome wasn’t looking good.

“Within 24 hours I got a call that he was on a ventilator and he only had a 10 percent chance to live.”

Kim Krogmeier

She said she feared her life would change every time she heard her phone ring.

“It was a lot of scary moments there. Every time the phone would ring I would be afraid to answer it.”

After five months in the hospital and seven more of physical therapy, Gerald is back on his feet but said still has lingering effects from the virus.

Even with continued treatment, he said doctors aren’t sure if he’ll ever fully recover.

“We’re still working on it. We don’t know. Nobody’s ever been here. That’s the thing – we’re plowing new ground.”

Doug Krogmeier

Gerald said his classic cars have helped him on his road to recovery.

“That’s all I have left, car shows and friends who own cars.”

The Krogmeiers say they go to around 50 car shows in a typical year and they’re ready to keep that going as Gerald continues to recover.

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Isabella Rossi

Multimedia Journalist

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