After losing her 28-year-old son to COVID-19, an Alabama mother said she regrets that her family didn’t get the vaccine.
Christy Carpenter told The Washington Post that her family didn’t get vaccinated because they had concerns about how soon it was rolled out.
“It took years to create other vaccines, and the coronavirus vaccine was created very quickly,” she said. “It took watching my son die and me suffering the effects of COVID for us to realize we need the vaccine.”
“We did not get vaccinated when we had the opportunity and regret that so much now,” she added.
Her son, Curt Carpenter, was hospitalized after getting COVID-19 in March. He was placed on a ventilator after developing pneumonia. He died on May 2. His mother was also hospitalized with COVID-19, but was able to recover.
Carpenter told The Post her son was healthy prior to catching the virus, and that he initially believed the pandemic to be a “hoax.” She said his last words were: “This is not a hoax, this is real.”
Many people have expressed regret over not getting vaccinated after being hospitalized with COVID-19 or watching a loved one struggle with or die from the disease. Meanwhile, authorities are trying to counteract vaccine hesitancy and encourage people to get the shot.
Alabama has the lowest vaccination rate of any US state, with about 34% of its population fully vaccinated, according to data compiled by the Mayo Clinic. As of Sunday, nearly 50% of the entire US population, or 163 million people, was fully vaccinated, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Alabama is also among a group of states seeing a spike in COVID-19 cases as the more transmissible Delta variant rapidly spreads.
US health officials have said it is now a “pandemic of the unvaccinated,” announcing last month that nearly all deaths from COVID-19 in the US are now among the unvaccinated.
More than 610,000 Americans have died of COVID-19 since the beginning of the pandemic.