Largely unmasked crowds throng the Missouri State Honest | leisure
Across the hall from a building that displays quilting and other handicrafts, Kelly Alexander and her husband from Lee’s Summit were the only ones in the crowd wearing masks. You are also vaccinated.
“My son and daughter-in-law are not vaccinated and only got the virus a few weeks ago,” she said. “My husband was in the hospital earlier this year and is high risk so I’m just scared if he ever gets sick so I’ll wear a mask even if I’m the only one.”
Jessica Miller, who oversaw the fair’s vaccination station, said five patients came to be vaccinated in the fair’s first 2.5 hours of operation. Some told Miller that their jobs would require the vaccine or that they would not be allowed to wear a mask if they were vaccinated.
Miller, a respiratory therapist trained to operate ventilators used in the worst of COVID-19 cases, was working eight weeks in Long Island, New York last spring when the virus raged and overcrowded hospitals in the area .
“I had to watch them gasp their way to death alone without their family,” Miller said, remembering how disappointed she was when she returned home to Sedalia and met skepticism and indifference about the virus.
Now that cases are skyrocketing and the vaccination rate is still low, Miller fears that more people in her community will die from vaccine resistance. As she spoke, a group of young, unmasked women passed the booth and scoffed at the vaccination efforts.