Polly Williams Kermit, West Virginia woman tells how 40 family members tested positive for coronavirus after attending a relative’s funeral last month. Infected by a family member who traveled interstate & declined telling of COVID-19 infection.
Polly Williams, of Kermit, West Virginia, said the virus has spread rapidly through her family after a COVID-19 infected relative flew from Arizona for the services without disclosing that she had the illness, the dailymail reports.
Williams, who declined to mention the relative by name, said her family met together to mourn the passing of her cousin, Keenetha Brige, on July 2 in Wayne County, West Virginia. They assumed the relative was groggy from her flight. No one wore face masks while they were together before or during the funeral and wake. A lapse of good preventative measures that family members should have been vigilant about.
‘My relative from out-of-state wasn’t feeling well, but I didn’t think a lot about it,’ Williams told the Mountain Citizen. “I figured she was tired from her flight and lack of sleep.
‘She never said one word about fearing her illness was something serious,’ Williams added. ‘Her condition worsened over the next couple of days and she supposedly had to seek medical attention but still never told us anything.’
Coronavirus spread through family like wildfire
The family learned only on the morning of Brige’s wake that the relative’s husband and son, who both stayed back in Arizona, had tested positive for the coronavirus several days earlier.
‘By the day of the wake, a young child in our family that had been in the home where my relative was staying, was the first among us to be positive. And so it began,’ Williams said.
Williams said the virus over the ensuing month has been ‘spreading like wildfire’ through her family and even to friends who didn’t attend the services.
While Williams tested positive for COVID & recovered, as have dozens of family members ranging from five months to 77 years old – other family members have had to endure hospitalization, including a two-year-old girl who had to be rushed to emergency last week after catching the virus and suffering a high fever.
‘When does it stop?’ asked Stella Brewer, Williams’ sister, in an interview with the Mountain Citizen. ‘When will we reach the point that no one else in our family gets that dreaded call?’
Every family member has had to quarantine for two weeks and the church where services were held is being sterilized.
Williams has since expressed outrage over the relative who flew into town while sick, risking the lives of fellow travelers and family members.
A cautionary tale and advise for precaution
‘I understand that my relative lost a close family member. I get that. My heart breaks for her,’ Williams told Citizen. ‘But to get on a plane while you’re ill and travel to another state, knowing full well you could infect everyone you are around is, in my opinion, selfish and unforgivable. The very least she could have done was to wear masks and gloves and warn all of us to stay away, that she was ill.’
Williams said she was only speaking out to warn of the seriousness of the virus and to serve as a precautionary tale to others to feel sick.
‘I’m not trying to degrade anyone or cause any hardship,’ Williams said. ‘I want the public to understand what we are going through and how it could have been prevented. I want others to know how serious COVID-19 is and what a catastrophe it can become if you’re not forthcoming about having it.’