On the last day of August, Shanette Harper’s brother died of COVID-19. He was close to what had happened, though he did not know it at the time.
Harper, a nurse, was caring for heart patients at Providence Alaska Medical Center in Anchorage when her relative was rushed to the emergency room in a cardiac arrest. He had called 911, unable to hold his breath. A few days ago he was diagnosed with COVID-19 pneumonia. As the medical team frantically tried to regain his heart, Harper worked his creative job just down the aisle.
“It was the end of his life, and I was with him in the same hospital,” he said. “And I didn’t even know it.”
As soon as she heard what had happened, she walked down the long corridor to the nurse’s station in the emergency room. Someone took her to her body, so she could spend the last few minutes with her older brother. He was forty-three years old.
That night, Harper went home and posted a message on Facebook:
“My brother died today,” he wrote. “After 16 days we are fighting COVID. I was just sure he would hit it. We texted and the last I read was feeling better on Saturday. Please consider what determines your decision not to vaccinate, and then seek medical advice so that your decision can be made public. ”
He deleted what was said.
“I do not want people to look down on my brother.”
Two weeks later, tears well up under Harper’s veil as he talks about his older brother: He was tall, had a bus voice and was ready to be joked. He worked for more than 20 years at a bank in Anchorage. He was skeptical – including about the ban on the plague. He saw his role as the custodian of everyone he loved.
He was not vaccinated.
Harper was upset about telling the story of his death.
He does not want his name published in the news issues, even if other family members leave it to his own intelligence. His brother was very present, and the whole of Alaska’s life. Most people will know who he is.
But there is a lot of violence, and domination, and politics in all of the epidemics right now, Harper says. Including death. He cannot bear the thought of strangers by lowering his memory.
“I don’t want people to come to my brother because of his choice,” he said.
At the same time, Harper wants to tell the story of the loss of an unarmed loved one to COVID-19 because few in Alaska have shared openly about the incident. He also thinks he can change some ideas about prevention.
“If one person lived on this issue, that’s for sure,” he said.
Harper Black. She is a long-term nurse. He, too, had questions about the virus but eventually decided to be protected. He knows the people in their community who are fearful and insecure about protection, and he wants them to at least ask their questions to a trusted medical professional.
“I want to talk about this,” he said. “Because I’m a colored person. Because I was reluctant to get it (the medicine). Because I found it. ”
And because his sister doesn’t.
“Hey, little one, what are you doing?”
Harper has been a nurse in Anchorage for over 15 years. He is also an actor who has performed in Alaska film, dance and theater production.
“I felt that COVID was very serious as a hospital nurse,” he said. “But I felt very insecure about getting a cure.”
When health workers were vaccinated in December and January, she wanted to know about any reproductive problems. He asked the questions of his fellow doctors, studied science, and felt comfortable enough to take his gun.
Harper and his brother were not raised in the same family but have been part of everyone’s life since childhood, he said. In their twenties, they grew up close by. He called her “baby sis” or “little one” and said that if she ever married, she would walk with him down the street.
They have gone through periods of separation in recent years. But in mid-August, upon receiving COVID, she wrote to her sister, a nurse:
“Hey little one,” he wrote. “WYD. I caught a vid. I don’t want it to change to pneumonia. ”
How did he find himself, he asked?
To be outside and to walk around without a mask, he replied.
“I was dying this morning”
Calm: She would text him to tell him her symptoms and encourage him to take care of them, give him hydrate diapers, reduce fever, and make sure he didn’t spend too much time in bed. She kept him informed of her changing fever. He told her when he lost his sense of smell. Nothing he said sounded serious.
“It just looked like he was going to get out of it,” he said. Nothing, he said, made him think he had to wear an N95 mask and a race over to take him to the hospital.
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One day in late August, he sent text messages saying that he had been in the emergency room. He was diagnosed with COVID-19 pneumonia and sent home.
“I was thinking I was dying this morning,” he wrote. Recently, he posted on Facebook to get an inhaler, which worked.
On August 31, Harper’s brother called 911 – he could not breathe. When paramedics arrived, he knocked on the door, said Harper. He had entered the imprisonment of the heart.
“They worked four circuits (CPR) in the field and two in the hospital,” he said.
He doesn’t really know what happened. Doctors say COVID-19 can be debilitating. The virus strikes everyone differently, he said.
Funeral services are coming. People in her family remain untouched. Some said they would take their chances with the virus.
“It’s very difficult to feel that in the face of kidnapping,” he said.
Harper says if he could do it again, he would push his brother too hard to inject himself. It may be possible for a younger sister.