By Jeff Wagner

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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Minnesota dad Brian Kueppers says he and his family have been locked inside their home for days because he tested positive for COVID-19.

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“I feel a lot better than I have over the last several weeks,” Kueppers said.

It’s been a slow but steady climb towards feeling healthy again for Kueppers — one of the more than 200 Minnesotans confirmed to have the illness.

“I’m just getting anxious now … wanting to get out of my house and go do stuff. And still with these minor symptoms, I can’t go anywhere,” Kueppers said.

Nor can his family. All remain quarantined in their Ramsey County home. It started not long after Kueppers began feeling sick on March 9. He felt a bit groggy, but the symptoms worsened in the days ahead.

“Feeling like you can’t take that full breath, and then if you try to it just leads to coughing,” Kueppers said. “Again, these really intense, you know, body aches almost like directly in your bones.”

On March 13, he visited a drive-thru testing location on Bloomington. Four days later, his results came back positive. By then his family was already in quarantine, with everyone believed to be infected.

The Kueppers family quaratined in their home. (credit: The Kueppers Family)

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“I’m only 52 years old. I have no other underlying health issues,” Kueppers said. “But I was concerned about the breathing aspect of this illness.”

Kueppers hasn’t traveled recently, but he did attend all three days of the Minnesota State Boys Hockey Tournament in St. Paul, as well as events surrounding it.

“And I bet you in all those shaking hands and hugging the people that I know, ultimately that’s where I probably picked it up, because that was the three, four days before I had any symptoms. And just the massive exposure to all the people I saw during that time frame,” Kueppers said.

Once his symptoms go away, he plans to wait seven days before ending his quarantine. But his eagerness to re-enter the world doesn’t trump his desire to keep others safe.

“I’m not gonna push it. There’s no reason to,” he said.

Kueppers said he called the people he came in close contact with during the hockey tournament. He says only one of them has mentioned showing minor symptoms.

Kueppers is one of the 262 positive cases confirmed so far in Minnesota as of Tuesday. That is up 27 from Monday.

Twenty-five Minnesotans have had to go to the hospital because of the virus. Seven people are in the ICU Tuesday night.

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Iowa confirmed its first death from COVID-19 on Tuesday evening. And in Wisconsin, the number of cases jumped to 457.

Jeff Wagner