Early recipient of plasma to treat COVID-19 reflects on Thanksgiving

As we approach Thanksgiving, a man who survived COVID-19 after a plasma treatment is especially thankful.

Mark Twentyman has never had a Thanksgiving where he's been more grateful for the simple things -- walking outside with his grandchildren seemed impossible a few months ago.

"Having a chance to still see my grand children. I get pretty emotional about that. And I’m not an emotional guy usually."  

The Brevard County grandfather acquired COVID-19 on a ski trip with buddies in March, and it turned into the fight of his life.

"They were pretty close to pulling the plug on me at one point."  

He was one of the first patients in Florida to receive plasma treatment. It was a lifesaver.

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"My daughter-in-law said the doctors at Cape Canaveral Hospital were astounded by my response. At the time, they’d never seen a response like that before from a plasma,"  Twentyman added.

Twentyman and his wife plan to have Thanksgiving at his son’s home, with nine adults and three children -- all have either quarantined or been tested.  He advises others not to take any chances, if they’re having second thoughts about going to a gathering, saying it’s not worth the risk. 

For Twentyman, he is ready to experience old holiday traditions with a brand new perspective.

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"It feels great! It makes you rethink a lot of things of how you’re going to do. What they let you stay on the planet for, for the rest of your life."

He plans to donate his own convalescent plasma once he fully recovers.He says two of his friends participated in the Pfizer vaccine clinical trials and hopes COVID-19 will be a distant memory during Thanksgiving of next year.


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