Currents News Staff
People who’ve had coronavirus and survived are now sharing their stories, and warning others to play it safe – especially young people who may feel “invisible” to the illness.
The coronavirus nearly killed Christopher Marshall. “I got so sick that it was, um, acute respiratory distress syndrome with septic shock,” he said.
The 37-year-old University of North Texas graduate student spent weeks at a Dallas hospital. “I definitely would have died. It got that serious,” Marshall added.
Though doctors saved him, Marshall now lives in fear of getting sick again due to the recent surge in COVID infections across Texas. He’s rarely leaving his home, struggling with survivor’s guilt.
“The hardest part for me initially waking up is seeing how many people died from COVID-19. It was like, why did I live? And everybody else died,” Marshall said.
Texas, one of the first states to push an aggressive reopening, is now seeing new cases and hospitalization rates reaching record-highs. So many getting sick, that in Houston the Texas Children’s Hospital is now admitting adult patients.
“Our big metro areas seem to be rising very quickly and some of the models are on the verge of begin apocalyptic,” said Dr. Peter Hotez, Dean of the School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine.
Minority communities are bearing the brunt of the pandemic. In Dallas, hispanics account for more than 60 percent of COVID-19 cases.
Among them is Dallas police officer Vincent Remediz, who was in the hospital for 82 days.
“Take that COVID stuff serious. I wish I never got it. I wish I never heard of it. But you know, I tell everybody else, take it seriously,” said Remediz.
The father of five was on a ventilator for more than a month – his brother says Vincent barely survived. “The family was worried about him passing away,” said Tom Remediz.
Bishop Greg Kelly worries most about undocumented patients – many of whom are essential workers.
“They don’t have any access to any kind of support, any kind of stimulus, so they have to work,” said Kelly.
And it’s not just latinos. Health officials say an increasing number of infections are among young people – like Chris Marshall.
“Stop thinking that you’re so invincible that you’re young and that this cannot happen to you. It can happen. I’m 37. It happened,” said Marshall.