Former EKU president back in the states after being stuck on cruise ship

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Former EKU president Doug Whitlock and his wife are finally back in the United States after being stuck on a cruise ship for weeks.

The Coral Princess Cruise Ship was scheduled to dock on March 19 in Argentina, but the country refused welcome the ship. It was finally able to dock in Florida on Saturday night. Among those on the ship are many passengers who tested positive for COVID-19, and two people who died.

Whitlock and his wife were still stuck in their rooms on Sunday morning, waiting for crews to lead them off the ship. “We’re ready to get out of here,” he said in a phone interview that morning.

Both appear to be in good health, but officials are taking precautions. “Before we can get off the ship they’ll do a health screening. They’ll take our temperature, vital signs, that kind of thing,” Whitlock explained.

But the threat won’t go away when they get off the ship. Passengers will be flown to larger airports, then fly home. Whitlock says he’s prepared for the air travel.

“We’ve got some wipes to wipe down surfaces that are supposed to kill about anything and we’re just going to stay cautious and stay distant from people,” he said.

Governor Andy Beshear issued an executive order which will require Whitlock and his wife to self-quarantine for two weeks when they finally get back to the bluegrass. Whitlock joked that it will be easy because his house has a lot more space than the cruise ship cabin.

Most importantly, Whitlock and his wife are just ready to be home and safe.