Family members of beloved Philadelphia police officer ask public to heed COVID-19 warnings

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- The Philadelphia Police Department honored Officer Tab Ali on Monday, a beloved public servant in the Manayunk neighborhood who lost his battle with COVID-19 last year.

"He was respected. He was courageous," said Philadelphia Councilmember Curtis Jones during the ceremony outside of the 5th District.

"I don't recall Tab ever taking a day off sick from work. Tab's ever visible presence on the Main Street corridor provided a calming effect for business owners, patrons and residents alike," said 5th District Captain Malachi Jones.

Officer Ali was a 25-year-veteran of the force. He also served as a Marine.

Family members said Ali passed away at his home. It wasn't until later that they learned he tested positive for the virus.

"We realize we're not alone, unfortunately, you know half a million people," said his nephew Thomas Johnson about the impacts of the coronavirus.

The family urged the public to heed the warnings from experts.

SEE ALSO: Philadelphia Police Department mourning 2 of its own due to COVID-19 pandemic
EMBED More News Videos

The Philadelphia Police Department is grieving the loss of two of its officers from the COVID-19 pandemic.



"I would ask each of you to just do the responsible thing for yourselves, your loved one, the people you don't know, the people you do know, and you know mask up and distance from them," Johnson added.

Pennsylvania officials reported good news Monday, announcing that for the first time in weeks some counties are seeing positivity rates lower than 5%. Statewide the positivity rate went down to 8.6%. New Jersey is at 9.3% and Delaware is at 6.6%

In Philadelphia, the positive rate is at 5.6%, which is still ranked by the state as a substantial level of transmission.

The focus now is on the vaccines that will hopefully put to end to the pain and suffering so many have already endured.

Some have asked if Lincoln Financial Field will be used as a mass vaccination site following the announcement from NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell that he'd make stadiums available.

The city said they have no plans to do so right now, but they are working on getting the vaccine into communities.

"Whether he realized it or not, Tab was a light to others," said Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw.

RELATED: Vaccine Trackers for Pennsylvania and New Jersey

Copyright © 2021 WPVI-TV. All Rights Reserved.