State lawmaker says her family has contracted COVID-19

(Trent Nelson | Tribune file photo) Rep. Candice Pierucci, R-Herriman, at the House Lounge in Salt Lake City, Oct. 30, 2019. The lawmaker said she and her family all have tested positive for COVID-19 and are experiencing symptoms as they self-quarantine.

State Rep. Candice Pierucci said she and two others in her household are suffering from the coronavirus, with symptoms ranging from fever to cough.

“For lack of a better way to say this: This virus sucks,” the Republican lawmaker tweeted Tuesday. “Grateful though that the symptoms have been relatively mild all things considered.”

Pierucci wrote in a text message that she, her husband and 16-month-old son are all dealing with the illness and are recovering at their Riverton home. She wrote on Twitter that they are experiencing coughs, headaches, loss of taste, congestion, fever and chills.

“[W]e are fortunate to be able to work remotely, have access to great health care and are glad we were able to identify the exposure and quarantine quickly,” she wrote in the text message, adding that she is particularly grateful for the medical professionals who are caring for patients during the pandemic.

Her husband, Andy Pierucci, wrote on social media that he contracted the infection from a relative and received his positive test result Friday. He praised contact tracers with the state health department who reached out to him right away after his test came back.

“Since we quarantined immediately and have been social distancing we are confident that we did not pass it on to others,” he wrote.

He tweeted Tuesday that he’s feeling much better and should be fully recovered and no longer contagious by the week’s end.

Pierucci is one of several state lawmakers who have personal experience with COVID-19. Sen. Luz Escamilla came down with the disease shortly after the state’s legislative session wrapped up in March. Though she never needed hospitalization, the Salt Lake City Democrat said the illness felt eternal.

Utah Rep. Melissa Garff Ballard, R-North Salt Lake, lost her father, former state House Speaker and businessman Bob Garff, to the coronavirus.

Senate President Stuart Adams said last month he tested positive for COVID antibodies but never had symptoms.

Pierucci is Utah’s youngest state lawmaker and was only 27 years old when she took office last year to fill the House vacancy left by Rep. John Knotwell, R-Herriman.

Over her career, she’s worked for U.S. Rep. Chris Stewart, R-Utah, and as development director for the Sutherland Institute, a conservative think tank. According to her latest financial disclosure, she is currently a contract research fellow with the Utah Women and Leadership Project at Utah Valley University.