‘An answer to prayer’: Residents, staff at Pawleys Island retirement community receive COVID-19 vaccine

Residents, staff at Pawleys Island retirement community receive COVID-19 vaccine

PAWLEYS ISLAND, S.C. (WMBF) – Residents and staff at a Pawleys Island retirement community received their first COVID-19 vaccinations on Monday.

The Lakes at Litchfield partnered with CVS Health to administer the Moderna vaccine, officials said.

As the first of the vaccines were administered, Executive Director Tim Layton got a little emotional about the big moment for the facility.

“Today is an answer to prayer. I’m going to cry, I’m sorry,” Layton said as he thought back on the past 10 months. “Seeing the hurt, the sadness, the hardship on them has just been a tough road for all of us.”

Since the pandemic began, the facility has had 19 coronavirus cases among residents and 13 among staff. Five residents have also died from the virus.

“It’s scary because one day they’re alive and the next day they’re dead so I was very happy to get the shot right away,” said The Lakes at Litchfield resident Eileen Shea.

Now residents and staff hope that the vaccine will mean a return to normalcy and being able to see loved ones.

“I never thought it would be tough, but it’s tragic. You’ll never know how lonesome it gets,” said The Lakes at Litchfield resident Elizabeth Chipman.

In total, more than 250 vaccinations will be completed during Monday’s clinic, according to a press release from the facility.

The facility will hold a second vaccine clinic on Jan. 25 so residents and staff can get the second dose of the vaccine.

Copyright 2020 WMBF. All rights reserved.