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Darnell is a reserved and thoughtful person who does not seek out special attention. He lives on the Navajo Nation with his family. Living on the Rez, keeps him close to his loved ones, and is easily able to practice and live his Navajo traditions.

He faced hardship early, when COVID-19 pandemic first swept across Navajo Nation, especially when his parents became infected by the virus. Life for Darnell changed then. Losing his stepfather to the virus was heart wrenching and shattering. Fortunately, he and his mother recovered from the illness.

“My mom and step-father got sick first, they were very bad and a few days later I began to show symptoms of COVID-19.”

Darnell’s symptoms lasted just over two weeks. After recovering he still had a lingering cough. He also felt weak and it was difficult to get back to 100%, because the virus greatly taxed his body.

“Staying active and doing breathing exercises helped.”

Assistance from family and friends was extraordinary. Their compassion encouraged Darnell’s morale, and strengthen his spirit, to rise up and overcome the virus. /p> “Food donations, and my family and friends’ tips on how to overcome the virus helped me. Taking Vitamin D and Zinc, and always eating warm foods and drinking hot liquids really helped.”

“Feeling like a danger to others was overwhelming. People wanted to help but the fear of exposing them to the infection overpowered accepting their help. It was difficult.”

Darnell wouldn’t wish the COVID-19 infection on anyone. It is a harrowing and potential devastating illness. Though he and his mother have recovered from the virus, they must continue life without a loved one they lost to the virus. He is thankful he and his mother have survived. He will move forward always and be thankful for his health and the love and support this family gave him.

“This disease has challenged many of us, a new virus that is among our people. We have to work together to get through this challenging time. Learning to lean on each other for help when we need it will it will get us through this pandemic.”

“Don’t be afraid to ask for help, there are many people out there that have experienced the fight against COVID-19. They can help because of their experience.”

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