August 1, 2021
An Urgent Plea to My Fellow Citizens of Alabama
As one quite old
citizen of Alabama, I am deeply concerned about the future of our state as it
relates to the Covid-19 pandemic. Based on what I have heard, it is possible that
soon the surging Delta variant virus will claim the lives of many of our neighbors
and friends. However, the number of deaths could be greatly reduced if more of our citizens will get vaccinated.
here’s the problem: many of our fellow Americans have chosen not to get
vaccinated. Only 56% of Americans over the age of 12 are fully vaccinated. While
that number is troubling for our nation, what is happening in Alabama is
embarrassing. Only 33% of Alabama citizens are fully vaccinated, and only 41% have
received one dose of the vaccine.
now you may be thinking, “Walter, you need to stick to devotional writing;
nobody is looking to you for medical advice.” That is true and for that reason I
have hesitated to write about the virus. But I kept thinking it would be worth
being criticized if I can persuade even one or two people to get vaccinated.
have some personal experience with the Covid-19 virus. It was a contributing
cause of my wife’s death this past December. At the end of November, Dean and I
both tested positive for the virus. Since she was in the hospital at the time, Dean
was quarantined for two weeks. At the end of this period of isolation, she was
sent home and died five days later. Two other terminal illnesses contributed to
I tested positive for Covid-19, I was worried and uncertain what to do. For
several months I had been reading the reports on the virus published by a
prominent Montgomery physician, Dr. David Thrasher. My friend Jere Beasley had
strongly endorsed Dr. Thrasher’s counsel about Covid-19. So
I called the good doctor who, without hesitation, advised me to let him give me
the Monoclonal Antibody infusion. This I did, though I admit it was not an easy
I was fearful that the virus might
kill me and there were no guarantees that the infusion would protect me from
the virus. Dr. Thrasher warned me that the infusion might have some serious
side effects but he also shared that none of his patients who had received the
infusion had been hospitalized. I had few if any side effects from the
infusion. After waiting the prescribed 90 days, I got the two Moderna shots and became fully vaccinated. It has given me
peace of mind to know that I am now 94 % less likely to be hospitalized with
the Covid-19 virus.
But the primary reason each of us needs to be fully
vaccinated is not the peace of mind it provides but that doing so will help our
nation overcome this deadly virus.
many people do not believe what I just said. There is a lot of ignorance about
the virus that has influenced many people to not get vaccinated. So I thought it might be helpful to interview Dr. Thrasher,
a recognized authority on Covid-19, and ask him to answer several pertinent
questions. He was kind enough to do so and here are my questions and his
Is it your opinion that by getting vaccinated, our fellow Alabama citizens will
likely save the lives of other Alabamians?
Thrasher: Yes, vaccines will unequivocally save lives.
Does a person who has had Covid-19 and survived need to get vaccinated?
Thrasher: If you have had covid you need to be vaccinated. Vaccine elicits
better immune response than the virus. If you have had covid and get
vaccinated, you have the most robust immune response known. I have now treated
12 folks who have been infected twice and one died.
Are fully vaccinated people at risk for getting the Delta variant virus?
Thrasher: Fully vaccinated people have a 35% chance of getting the Delta virus
but the vaccines prevent most of them from becoming seriously ill or dying. If
you have any symptoms, even if vaccinated, get tested ASAP! We have better
treatments now – Regeneron infusion – but it only works if used very early –
less than 10 days of symptoms. Many doctors are not familiar with the
reinfection risk with Delta. If you go to Urgent Care, don’t take steroids in
first 7 days of symptoms and get tested before going home with prescriptions
such as Prednisone, Medrol dose pack, Decadron or receiving a steroid shot. If
positive for the virus, contact a doctor with covid knowledge but always ask
for the infusion to see if you qualify. 90% of Alabamians now qualify under new
What advice would you give a 30-year-old man who says, “The virus is killing
mostly older people; all I need to do is avoid crowds and wear a mask at
Thrasher: That was true – until the Delta virus appeared. Delta is hitting
people ages 30 – 40 very hard. We have several that age now on ventilators who
will likely die.
Would you agree that no matter your age, getting vaccinated is one way to love
Dr. Thrasher: Absolutely!
Is the threat of the Delta virus so great that it’s important for everyone to
speak up and encourage others to get vaccinated?
Dr. Thrasher: Yes! For sure! And
by encouraging people to get vaccinated, I believe you are doing God’s work and
saving lives and souls!
I thank Dr. Thrasher for his response
and assure him, as I have before, that I am praying for him and his staff as
they stand in the gap for all of us during this prolonged pandemic.
my dear Alabama brothers and sisters, if you are not fully vaccinated, please
heed this sincere plea – get vaccinated this week as a gift of love to your
friends, family and fellow citizens. Thank you! + + +