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Wife of Firefighter Who Needs New Lungs to Survive COVID Says He Regrets Not Getting Vaccine

·2 min read

The family of Houston firefighter Wayne Davis, whose battle with COVID-19 has left him in urgent need of a lung transplant, hopes their story will encourage others to get vaccinated.

Wayne, a firefighter with the Houston Fire Department and father of three, was hospitalized last month after contracting the virus on the job, according to CBS affiliate KHOU.

His wife Caitlin told the outlet that although she repeatedly told her husband to get vaccinated, he "kept putting it off."

"I was vaccinated and I just kept getting on him to go do it," she told KHOU. "He would say, 'I'll go do it,' and kept putting it off. He just never did it."

RELATED: Widow of N.J. Officer Who Died of COVID Says Son Wants to Mark 12th Birthday by Getting Vaccine

Now, in order to survive, doctors say Wayne needs a bilateral lung transplant, the outlet reported.

"It's just been a rollercoaster of emotions day-by-day," Caitlin told KHOU of the impact her husband's health battle has had on their family.

His six-week hospitalization also prevented Wayne from being there for his 5-year-old daughter Caroline's first day of kindergarten. In a heartwarming show of support, his coworkers walked her to school that day, and he was able to watch on FaceTime.

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Caitlin hopes that their story will convince others to take action.

"Anybody that's still on the fence, I would show them a picture of Wayne now with the tubes and just say, would you rather have a six-week period in the hospital knowing you could possibly die, or just go to Walgreens for 20 minutes and get a shot?" Caitlin told KHOU.

"Our story shows people that it isn't just older people — it can be your family very easily," she added.

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from the CDC, WHO and local public health departments. PEOPLE has partnered with GoFundMe to raise money for the COVID-19 Relief Fund, a GoFundMe.org fundraiser to support everything from frontline responders to families in need, as well as organizations helping communities. For more information or to donate, click here.

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