Place of Residence: Suffolk, Virginia

Teresa was a healthy, artistic 10-year-old who loved to read, sew, draw, sing, and dance. She loved being a Junior Girl Scout and was very outgoing. She wasn’t high risk for COVID and hadn’t been vaccinated because in September 2021 it wasn’t yet approved for her age group. Sadly, Teresa lost her life to COVID in just a few short days. Her mother, Nicole – an elementary school teacher – shares her daughter’s story to inform other parents that vaccination is our best defense against COVID.

Teresa’s mother, Nicole, shares the story of losing her healthy, 10-year-old daughter to COVID on September 27, 2021. 

Dwight & Brenda

Place of Residence: McLeansboro, Illinois

Married for 54 years, Dwight and Brenda loved spending time with their family, especially their grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Because they lived in a small town, they didn’t think COVID was a threat to them and decided not to get vaccinated. Sadly, they ended up hospitalized and lost their lives to COVID within one day of each other in August 2021.

Below in his own words, their son, Windell, shares the story of losing both of his parents to COVID-19. 


Place of Residence: Gainesville, Florida

In December 2020, Kristin was a healthy, 31-year-old nurse practitioner who cared for patients at her rural medical clinic. Although she worked in health care, she didn’t think she was at risk for severe COVID illness and was patiently awaiting her turn to get vaccinated. Her life changed drastically after spending 111 days in the hospital with COVID. Now Kristin has numerous ongoing medical issues but uses her expertise and experience to continue educating her patients about the importance of vaccination.

Kristin shares the story of how she almost lost her life to COVID.  


Place of Residence: Los Angeles, California

At 15 years old, Braden was described by his film teacher as “a unique spark of joy in this world”. Others knew him to be a kind soul, a true artist, and a compassionate friend. Braden fell ill with COVID-19 and suffered from multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (also known as MIS-C). After seeking medical attention, he was hospitalized with COVID-19, suffered numerous complications, and sadly lost his life on January 5, 2021. Braden was not vaccinated against COVID-19 because it had not yet been approved for his age group in December 2020.

His mother, Amanda, shares Braden’s story below in her own words.


Place of Residence: Superior, Colorado

Sarah received a COVID-19 vaccine while pregnant and her daughter tested positive for COVID antibodies at four months old. Sarah wants others to know the benefits of COVID vaccination for pregnant people.

Below, Sarah shares her personal experience as a postpartum mother.


Place of Residence: Rockville, Maryland

Monica describes her 41-year-old daughter, Maria, as a bright light who makes this world a better place. She never imagined that COVID-19 would cause her daughter to be hospitalized for 130 days and almost lose her life. Now she wants to help inform others about the importance of vaccination, especially minority populations who may struggle with vaccine access and education.

Maria’s mother, Monica, shares the story of how her daughter almost lost her life to COVID.  



Place of Residence: North Bethesda, Maryland

At age 41, Maria was living her best life and enjoying an active lifestyle filled with work, friends, travel, and leisure activities. Her world abruptly changed when she was hospitalized with COVID for 130 days – 69 of which were spent on ECMO life support. Maria’s family was told many times that they should be prepared to lose her.

Now Maria has some lingering medical issues to deal with, but as a survivor she shares her story to help educate others about the potential dangers of COVID-19 and the importance of vaccination.

Maria shares the story of how she almost lost her life to COVID.  


Place of Residence: Iowa City, Iowa

At two-years-old, JJ was a happy, funny, and energetic child who loved animals, gymnastics, books, and spending time with family and friends. He and his parents traveled often. Sadly, although he was a healthy child, JJ lost his life to flu in February 2020 just 10 hours after first showing symptoms. Some of his mother’s favorite memories of JJ are reading books together at bedtime and holding hands while he was falling asleep.

JJ’s mother, Maurine, shares the story of how she lost her two-year-old son to flu.



Place of Residence: Louisville, Kentucky

Brent’s father, Jeb, describes his son as a real “go getter” who loved the culinary arts and music. As a healthy 29-year-old, Brent was not considered to be high-risk for flu – yet he lost his life just a week after getting sick.

As a pediatrician, Jeb knows the importance of annual flu vaccination and the power of prevention. Now his mission is to raise awareness to help prevent other families from having a similar experience.

Brent’s father, Jeb, shares the story of how his 29-year-old son lost his life to flu on November 3, 2019.


Place of Residence: Lake Worth, Florida

As a healthy football mom of two with a busy career and home life, Mindy never imagined that flu would sideline her from the things she loved. Yet in October 2019, at age 47, Mindy found herself hospitalized and fighting to stay alive after being diagnosed with flu and pneumonia. She spent 28 days on life support and underwent intensive rehabilitation, but thankfully survived. Now she wants others to know that even healthy adults can fall victim to flu and associated complications.

Mindy shares the story of how she narrowly survived a life-threatening flu illness.