“Everything just went upside-down”: NCFL woman returns home after 54-day battle with COVID-19

Published: Sep. 23, 2021 at 1:35 PM EDT
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) - A North Central Florida woman spent is back home with her family for the first time in nearly two months following her battle with COVID-19. From feeling fine to suddenly very sick, Heather Pelletier of Dixie County checked into UF Health Shands Hospital in late August.

“From there everything just went upside down,” said Pelletier.

She was unvaccinated and faced pneumonia and organ failure along with being put on a ventilator and feeding tube. Doctors told her family to make funeral arrangements.

“You’re supposed to outlive your children and here we are facing this,” said her stepmother Allison Pelletier.

It was the determination to once again see and hug her three sons that pushed Heather through every step of the way.

“It was just all I could think about was going home to see them and let them know that mommy survived,” said Pelletier.

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After spending 54 days in the hospital and overcoming a series of complications, her dream is now a reality. She returned home to her boys on Wednesday.

“They mean everything to me. They got me through,” said Heather.

From zoom calls and bedside chats to now walking and giving hugs, Heather’s family describes her recovery as a gift in more ways than one. Allison said she couldn’t ask for a better miracle and birthday present.

“It didn’t matter what we did for me today. This is what it’s about.”

Heather’s message through it all is to get vaccinated.

“I plan on getting vaccinated again because I don’t plan on putting my family or anyone through this ever again,” said Heather.

One of her first plans after seeing her sons is to get her first shot.

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