An unvaccinated Virginia couple in their 40s recently died of COVID-19, leaving behind four children — and the father with one tragic regret before he succumbed. “He called me up and said, ‘Mom, I love you, and I wish that I’d got the shot,’” said Terry Mitchem, the mother of Kevin Mitchem, to to NBC 4 in Washington, D.C.
She and other relatives of Kevin and his late wife, Misty, are now urging those who have to be vaccinated to get immunized. “Please get it,” Kevin’s father, Don Mitchem, told the station.
“That virus will take you at any age. But taking a mother and father is — it’s uncalled for,” Don Mitchem said.
Breaking news: Colin Powell dies from COVID-19 complications, family says
Misty Mitchem — whose children with Kevin were as young as 1 and as old as 11 — died of the virus early this month. Kevin — who had previously brushed off his parents’ advice to get vaccinated — was reportedly killed by it a few days later.
“We’d just say, ‘Hey, Kevin let’s get the shot, buddy. It’s not going to hurt you,’ ” Don Mitchem recalled.
He said his son responded, “ ‘Oh, I know. I’m all right. I’m not going to get the shot. I don’t need it.’ ”
But Kevin’s reluctance soon turned to regret as Misty died and his own condition worsened, the outlet reported. That’s when he called his mom and told her he loved her and wished he’d been immunized.
“Of course I told him, ‘It’s past. You can’t do anything about it,’ ” Terry Mitchem said.
The late Stafford County couple had met in high school, the outlet reported. Kevin operated heavy equipment and helped his father with side jobs to support his family, kin said.
“He was always working to make ends meet and so forth. He loved his kids — always doing something with them,” Terry told the station.
The couple’s children are being cared for by an aunt in South Carolina, the outlet reported.