River Valley teacher and breast cancer survivor explains her choice to get COVID-19 vaccine

When the pandemic started, Hollie Husband and her family had to decide if she would continue to work in the classroom because she is immune-compromised.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, there is no shortage of numbers – cases, deaths, active infections, vaccines. But in the coming weeks, 5NEWS wants to give a face and a name to one of those statistics – as efforts to get more Americans vaccinated increase.

Hollie Husband is a teacher in the River Valley and lives in Greenwood, Arkansas. When the pandemic started, the 43-year-old and her family had to decide whether to continue working in the classroom because she is immune.

“I was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer in the fall of 2014. I was 36 years old,” said Hollie Husband. “I absolutely had to face death.”

Six and a half years later, her husband is on maintenance, not yet in remission, for her cancer, and she is still receiving daily oral chemotherapy.

“I’m exhausted at the end of the day. So my health is already suffering, but I still want to teach, ”said husband.

But her passion for teaching cemented her decision to stay face to face with her students, and her experience as a breast cancer survivor cemented her decision to get the COVID-19 vaccine when it became available.

“Because we’ve relied on God and modern medicine throughout our lives,” said the man. “Someone took the first smallpox vaccine at some point, someone took the first measles vaccine at some point, and someone took the first polio vaccine.”

After her husband received the Pfizer vaccine in January 2021, she says it was a huge relief, and has now chosen not to wear a mask at work.

“We don’t live in fear, but we live cautiously now,” said man

After missing a year in class due to cancer, husband says she is so grateful that things are slowly returning to normal after losing another year to COVID-19.

“You are just reminded of what a precious gift this personal lesson is and that you are able to hug and love a child and stand next to him without worry,” said husband.

And for those considering getting vaccinated, Hollie says it’s important to talk to your doctor and decide what’s best for your family.

‘I wanted to be vaccinated for my family. For my family, it was, my boys and my husband want to protect me at all costs, ”the man said.

Six of Hollie’s children are 16 and older. They have all received at least one dose of the vaccine or plan to be vaccinated by this summer. She says she hopes they can have a graduation party for their 2021 graduate and feel comfortable getting together with others.

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