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‘I love you, I miss you’: National Guardsman loses dad to COVID-19, urges others to get vaccinated


By Aubry Killion

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NEW ORLEANS (WDSU) — A sergeant in the U.S. Army National Guard is telling his story about losing his dad to COVID-19. Now, he’s urging everyone to get the shot before the holidays.

Vaccine events are happening all across the city.

People who got their first shot were paid $100. Which was very promising for Sgt. David Penn.

“Get your shots. They work to protect your family — protect the people you love,” Penn said.

Penn lost his dad one year ago to COVID-19.

He was a retired police officer with a larger-than-life personality.

“We weren’t ready, it was a shock,” Penn said.

Penn said his dad was not vaccinated. While the heartbreak will never go away, he says seeing people get the shot gives him hope.

Penn hopes his story inspires others to get vaccinated as he prepares to spend the holidays without his father.

“I can remember how that affected my family especially because it was Dec. 9 when he passed so going into the holidays with that in your heart you can avoid that,” Penn said. “It’s my hope that people take into consideration the holidays are here, you are going to be with your family, it’s your responsibility to look out for others who can’t look out for themselves.

“You can get this vaccination. I’ve had it. I had my booster. Maybe you are uncomfortable for a day or two but you can possibly spare your heartache. I love you, I miss you.”



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