Chinese Professor Dies From Novel Coronavirus

By Frank Fang
Frank Fang
Frank Fang
Frank Fang is a Taiwan-based journalist. He covers U.S., China, and Taiwan news. He holds a master's degree in materials science from Tsinghua University in Taiwan.
February 27, 2020Updated: February 27, 2020

A former professor in the city of Wuhan, where the novel coronavirus first emerged in China, has succumbed to the disease.

The School of Management at Wuhan Institute of Technology issued an obituary for one of its teachers on Feb. 26. Yang Chongqi died at the age of 66 at around 6 a.m. local time on Feb. 25 at the Renmin Hospital of Wuhan University.

Yang was born in Wuhan and graduated from the Wuhan Institute of Technology in 1981. He then began teaching at his alma mater in 2003, until his retirement in 2015.

The obituary stated that Yang was a member of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and was Party secretary of a party organization at the School of Management.

However, the obituary did not elaborate on how or when Yang became infected with the virus.

The escalating coronavirus outbreak began in Wuhan, capital of central China’s Hubei Province, in December 2019.

The virus has since spread to over 40 countries around the world. China’s neighbor, South Korea, is among the hardest hit, with at least 1,766 known cases and 13 deaths as of Feb. 27.

Yang was not the only Chinese scholar to have recently died due to the virus.

Duan Zhengcheng, a professor at the School of Mechanical Science and Engineering at Huazhong University of Science and Technology, located in Wuhan, died at the age of 86 at around 7:30 p.m. local time on Feb. 15, according to China’s state-run media Chengdu Economic Daily.

Duan, born in coastal China’s Jiangsu province, was named an academician of China’s Academy of Engineering in 2009.

Duan tested positive for the virus on Jan. 29. His condition drastically worsened on Feb. 15. He had diabetes before being infected with the virus.

Also at Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Hong Ling, a professor at the College of Science and Technology, died at the age of 54 at 11 p.m. local time on Feb. 7, according to Chinese state-run media Beijing News. It is unclear when Hong was infected with the virus.

On Feb. 10, Lin Zhengbin, a doctor and professor at Tongji Hospital affiliated with the Huazhong University of Science and Technology, passed away at the age of 62, according to Chinese news portal Sohu.