Vaccine-hesitant Alabama mom shares son’s haunting last words to push life-saving shots
Curt Carpenter, left, and his mother Christy (Christy Carpenter)

A grieving mother in Alabama has become an advocate for COVID-19 vaccinations in America's least-vaccinated state after her first-born son told her on his deathbed that the virus is not a hoax.

Christy Carpenter says her son, 28-year-old Curt Carpenter, was otherwise healthy and initially thought COVID was a hoax, the Washington Post reports. She and other family members were hesitant to get vaccinated because they believed the vaccine was created too quickly. Christy Carpenter is now suffering from long-term symptoms of COVID herself. Curt Carpenter died on May 2 after two months on a ventilator. '"This is not a hoax, this is real," were the last words he uttered, according to his mother.

"It took watching my son die and me suffering the effects of COVID for us to realize we need the vaccine," Christy Carpenter said. "We did not get vaccinated when we had the opportunity and regret that so much now. If Curt were here today, he would make it his mission to encourage everyone to get vaccinated. Cayla, his sister, and I are carrying out that mission in his memory."

Alabama is currently America's least vaccinated state, with only 33.9 percent of eligible adults fully vaccinated. Unvaccinated people account for more than 95 percent of current COVID hospitalizations in Alabama.

"If we can help keep people healthier and possibly save lives by encouraging others to take the vaccine, then Curt's death was not in vain," Christy Carpenter said. "Life is a precious gift from God."

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