A friend of the White House security official who lost his foot to severe COVID-19 complications said his story is being exploited by the media for political reasons

A friend of the White House security official who lost his foot to severe COVID-19 complications said his story is being exploited by the media for political reasons
The White House and Christmas decorations seen on December 7, 2020.Xinhua/Liu Jie via Getty Images
  • A senior White House official who lost a foot due to COVID-19 complications became a major news story after his situation became public.
  • A friend running a GoFundMe campaign for his medical costs said that she suspected the attention paid to him was politically motivated.
  • Crede Bailey, head of the White House security office, caught COVID-19 in September but is now recovering.
  • Reports about Bailey's condition identified him as a passionate Trump supporter and linked his illness to the wider outbreaks in the White House.
  • In an update after the media attention, Dawn McCrobie wrote: "Maybe the stories are about something else and Crede's experience just plays into those stories."

A friend of Crede Bailey, the head of the White House security office who lost a foot and big toe due to COVID-19 complications, claimed that he is being exploited by the media because of his place of work.

Bailey fell extremely unwell with COVID-19 in mid-September and needed to have part of his right leg amputated. He is now recovering, Bloomberg News reported Monday.

A number of news outlets, including Business Insider, reported on his story, and the context of Bailey being amongst the at least 50 White House insiders known to have been sickened by the virus.
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Several, including Bloomberg, identified Bailey as "a strong Trump supporter."

Dawn McCrobie, a friend of Bailey's who set up a GoFundMe page to cover his medical bills, said on Monday that outlets were using her friend.

"You might be asking yourself why the media wants to write about him? After all, he is a public servant," McCrobie wrote on the GoFundMe. "Perhaps the story isn't really about Crede at all."
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It is in fact not unusual for media outlets to be interested in public servants, especially those who work closely with the president. President Donald Trump and his allies have long alleged that the media treats them unfairly.

A friend of the White House security official who lost his foot to severe COVID-19 complications said his story is being exploited by the media for political reasons
US President Donald Trump seen in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, DC on December 7, 2020.Photo by SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images
"Maybe the stories are about something else and Crede's experience just plays into those stories." Bailey's family had asked the White House not to publicize his illness, Bloomberg said. Business Insider contacted the White House for comment.
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McCrobie said on Monday that friends of Bailey should avoid the media.

"While there are others out there who may seek or desire the media's attention, that's not the case here! Per Crede's wishes, please let the media tell their story without your input," she wrote.

Read more: Lawmakers just unveiled the text of their 'Christmas miracle' coronavirus stimulus. Here's what's in the latest attempt to provide relief.
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"Members of the media learned of this campaign and are now trying to use Crede's family and friends to participate in their story."

In an earlier update, posted on December 8, McCrobie wrote that Bailey was on the mend, but was facing a hefty medical bill.

A friend of the White House security official who lost his foot to severe COVID-19 complications said his story is being exploited by the media for political reasons
Donald Trump takes off his face mask as he comes out on a White House balcony to speak to supporters gathered on the South Lawn in Washington, October 10, 2020.Tom Brenner/Reuters
"Crede has recently been released from the ICU and is now at a full-time rehabilitation center where he is focused on gaining strength and learning to live a new normal," she wrote.
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"Crede beat COVID-19 but it came at a significant cost."

As of Tuesday morning, the fundraiser had received $50,094 in donations.

"Can you imagine the adjustments that are needed and the COST of everything? Of course not and neither can his family which is why we need your continued support!," she wrote.
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Bailey will be fitted for a prosthetic leg in the coming months, McCrobie said, adding that he will need "crutches, a walker, a wheelchair, a scooter."

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