This photo is of three generations of my family at Thanksgiving this year. My wife Kristin is the photographer. I am confident that part of what made this photo possible was the fact that everyone in the photo and behind the camera has received vaccinations to prevent COVID-19. Cases of COVID-19 and deaths related to COVID-19 have decreased significantly in my mom’s nursing center since the residents have been vaccinated, thus allowing for visitation from both family and friends and significantly increasing the quality of life my mom and dad are able to experience. My parents now have lunch and dinner together everyday instead of only seeing each other through a closed window. Vaccines made that possible.
My dad, pictured on the left never had a chance as a child for such a photograph with either of his grandfathers because both died of diseases long before he was born that are now preventable by developments in medical science and vaccines.
My dad’s parents never knew their fathers because of what are now preventable deaths. My dad’s paternal grandfather died before my paternal grandfather was even born, and my dad’s maternal grandfather died when my paternal grandmother was only three years old. No memories and no pictures like this one were possible for my dad or his parents because medical science had not yet advanced enough to make them possible.
My parents and I have all had our booster shots, and the rest of my family will be receiving their boosters during the holidays. Our younger daughter had a breakthrough case of COVID in September. Fortunately, our daughter’s case was relatively mild, and she is doing well. Our family is so thankful for medical science and for the vaccines that have contributed to making it possible for three generations of our family to be together.
My dad is a retired physician, my maternal grandfather was a medical school professor and physician, and our older daughter is a pre-med student. I am thankful for the contributions my family has made and will continue to make to bring healing into this world. Medical science and vaccines save lives as do other basic mitigation measures to keep ourselves and others safe. Please take of yourselves and others during this holiday season and beyond.