Marquis Davis was 28 and unvaccinated when he died after contracting coronavirus
The family of a Florida business owner who died of COVID-19 last month used his funeral as a site for testing and administering vaccines to protect people against the disease.
Marquis Davis, who passed away of COVID-19 complications on July 26, was the owner of Davis Flawless Lawns registered in Cocoa, Florida.
Faith Temple Christian Center, the family’s church in Rockledge, Florida, requested that testing and shots be provided at the wake and memorial to spread more awareness about coronavirus, his widow Charnese Davis told ABC News. The family agreed.
“Now we’re seeing things completely shift with this Delta variant. [Marquis] was 28 years old, had the rest of his life in front of him, and because of COVID-19, specifically this delta variant, and he was not vaccinated, his life was cut short,” said Dr. R. Shaun Ferguson, pastor of Faith Temple Christian Center. “Our position as a church is let’s get this cut. Let’s do this. I don’t want to see another person lose their life, period.”
Charnese Davis said Marquis Davis was not vaccinated when he contracted COVID-19 and that she noticed him getting sick late last month. After testing positive, he was in quarantine at home when his condition worsened. He was later taken to a hospital where he spent six days on an oxygen machine.
Marquis Davis vowed to get vaccinated if he pulled through, but, sadly, he did not.
“He was so adamant about not getting it, everything we hear about the vaccine wasn’t always perfect … It’s a lot of younger adults my age who don’t want to get it or they think it won’t affect them,” Charnese Davis said to WFTV. “But, it does affect you. This could have been prevented, so let’s get vaccinated so it doesn’t happen to you.”
The wake for Marquis took place Friday and the funeral service took place Saturday. A post stated that vaccinations were to take place at each event at the Faith Temple Christian Center, where shots from Pfizer and Johnson and Johnson were provided.
Anita Stremmel, a spokeswoman of the Brevard County Health Department, told Florida Today that this was the first vaccination event of this kind in the county and praised it, despite its unorthodox execution.
“Yes, it is out of the ordinary, but with the case numbers as high as Brevard is seeing, we need to consider the unusual when it comes to protecting our citizens and providing vaccinations,” Stremmel said.
As of Saturday, Brevard County’s weekly average of positive cases is 550, representing a 78% increase in transmissions in 14 days, as reported by the New York Times.
Only 48% of Brevard County residents of all ages are fully vaccinated.
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