DENVER, Colo. (KRDO) -- According to 9News, Denver Mayor Michael Hancock flew to Houston, Texas on Wednesday to see family immediately after telling people to only spend Thanksgiving with their own household.
At 4:15 p.m. Hancock released a statement apologizing to the residents of Denver.
I fully acknowledge that I have urged everyone to stay home and avoid unnecessary travel. I have shared how my family cancelled our plans for our traditional multi-household Thanksgiving celebration. What I did not share, but should have, is that my wife and my daughter have been in Mississippi, where my daughter recently took a job. As the holiday approached, I decided it would be safer for me to travel to see them than to have two family members travel back to Denver.
I recognize that my decision has disappointed many who believe it would have been better to spend Thanksgiving alone. As a public official, whose conduct is rightly scrutinized for the message it sends to others, I apologize to the residents of Denver who see my decision as conflicting with the guidance to stay at home for all but essential travel. I made my decision as a husband and father, and for those who are angry and disappointed, I humbly ask you to forgive decisions that are borne of my heart and not my head.Mayor Michael B. Hancock
His spokeswoman confirmed to 9News that Hancock flew to visit his daughter in Mississippi around 9 a.m. Wednesday.
"As he has shared, the Mayor is not hosting his traditional large family dinner this year, but instead traveling alone to join his wife and daughter where the three of them will celebrate Thanksgiving at her residence instead of having them travel back to Denver," a statement from the mayor's spokesperson reads. "Upon return, he will follow all necessary health and safety guidance and quarantine."
About a half hour before the plane took off, Hancock posted a Tweet encouraging people to host virtual gatherings and avoid traveling.
Pass the potatoes, not COVID.— Michael B. Hancock 😷 (@MayorHancock) November 25, 2020
🏘️Stay home as much as you can, especially if you're sick.
💻Host virtual gatherings instead of in-person dinners.
❌Avoid travel, if you can.
🍲Order your holiday meal from a local eatery.
🎁Shop online with a small business for #BlackFriday. pic.twitter.com/acQpWs2Ism
An email from Hancock's assistant obtained by 9News said the mayor will be out of the office until Friday.
During a news conference Wednesday, Governor Polis said he didn't know Hancock had plans to travel.
Tuesday, Governor Polis gave an update on the current COVID-19 situation in Colorado. Polis said the latest statistics show that 1 out of every 41 Coloradans has the virus.