X-ray worker who was 'so excited' to get Covid vaccine dies of 'severe reaction'

An x-ray technician who shared his excitement about getting his coronavirus vaccine died days later of what his wife claims was a reaction to it. Tim Zook, from Santa Ana in California, wrote: ‘Never been so excited to get a shot before. I am now fully vaccinated after receiving my 2nd Pfizer dose’ on Facebook on January 5.

The 60 year-old uploaded a photo of his arm with a Band-Aid on it, as well as a snap of his vaccination card. But just hours later Zook suffered an upset stomach at work, and began struggling to breathe.

His colleagues walked him to the emergency room at South Coast Global Medical Center, with Zook’s wife Rochelle texting him to ask: ‘Should I be worried?’

He answered ‘No. Absolutely not.’ Zook also told Rochelle that he didn’t think his symptoms were related to the Pfizer vaccine. But Rochelle now fears the injections may have caused her husband’s untimely death.

She explained: ‘We are not blaming any pharmaceutical company. My husband loved what he did. He worked in hospitals for 36-and-a-half years. He believed in vaccines. I’m sure he would take that vaccine again, and he’d want the public to take it.

‘But when someone gets symptoms two-and-a-half hours after a vaccine, that’s a reaction. What else could have happened?

‘We would like the public to know what happened to Tim, so he didn’t die in vain. Severe reactions are rare. In reality, Covid is a much more deadly force than reactions from the potential vaccine itself.’

Rochelle added: ‘The message is, be safe, take the vaccine — but the officials need to do more research. We need to know the cause. The vaccines need to be as safe as possible. Every life matters.’

After Tim’s initial illness, he was suspected of suffering from Covid, as well as congestive heart failure.

Multiple Covid tests came back negative, with Zook given oxygen. He was put on a ventilator around 36 hours later, and transferred to the University of California Irvine Medical Center for specialist treatment.

Recalling the awful diagnosis she received shortly after, Rochelle told The Orange County Register: ‘On Friday I get a call, “His kidneys are failing. He needs to be on dialysis. If not, he could die — but there’s also a chance he might have a heart attack or stroke on dialysis because his blood pressure is so low.”‘

Zook suffered three emergency ‘code blues’ over the ensuing hours, but was saved from dying. Doctors then warned Rochelle that ‘he’d have brain damage and be a vegetable’ if they managed to save her spouse from a fourth code blue. Tim died a few hours later.

The widow told of how her late husband was generally very healthy. He had high blood pressure which had been controlled by medication, and was slightly overweight.

Rochelle said: ‘He had never been hospitalized. He’d get a cold and be over it two days later. The flu, and be over it three days later.’

Zook’s death has been reported to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System, which is run by the US government’s Centers for Disease Control and Food and Drug Administration.

His cause of death is currently listed as ‘inconclusive’ by the Orange County Coroner, with a toxicology report expected to take months.

At least two other American men have died after receiving Covid vaccines, although it is unclear if those deaths were linked to the injections themselves.

The speed at which Covid vaccines were developed and put into use – within nine months – raised some concerns over their safety.

But the two shots currently approved for use in the United States, from Pfizer and Moderna – were tested on tens of thousands of volunteers, with scientific data showing them to be very safe.

Millions of doses of Covid vaccines have been administered across the US since December, with only a tiny percentage of people suffering adverse effects.

The United States has recorded 25.4million Covid cases, and 425,250 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University.

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