Seniors Celebrate Arrival Of Vaccine At Long-Term Care Facility

Dec 29, 2020, 6:39 PM | Updated: 7:49 pm

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Cheers of joy filled the air at The Ridge Foothill Senior Living Center in Salt Lake City as the first COVID-19 vaccines arrived Tuesday afternoon.

More than 200 residents and staff members all got the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine.

For residents like Wendy Moench, 69, Tuesday was a very exciting day because of the isolation and quarantine restrictions they’ve all been under for the past 10 months. 

“It’s been a tragedy, it’s been terrible,” Moench told KSL as she spoke about not being able to hug her family and loved ones. 

“There is nothing better than a hug. I’ve missed that terribly,” she said. 

When she sat down to get the shot, it was all smiles. “COVID go away,” she said, right before the shot was given and everyone burst into cheers. 

“It’s freedom. It’s freedom. We have freedom now,” Moench added. “To be able to hug your children, to be able to hug your great-grandchildren, your father, your mother, your brother, your sisters.”

Veneice Parkin, 87, cried herself to sleep many nights because she could not be with her family.

“This is a wonderful day,” said Parkin. “When my daughter called me last night and said, ‘You get your shot tomorrow,’ I thought, ‘Oh thank God,’ because I’m not ready to go yet. I’ve got children I want to see.”

Administrators at the center said they were also celebrating the installation of new air filtration systems in three of their facilities. 

“It attaches to it like a magnet and deactivates the virus,” said Mandy Hampton, chief operating officer of The Ridge. “Between this and the vaccine, this is a game-changer for us.”

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Seniors Celebrate Arrival Of Vaccine At Long-Term Care Facility