In what appears to be another lesson from where the public may realize the importance of being protected against the highly infectious COVID-19, Dickinson City Council Member Scott Apley lived and died on a wrong impression over the potency of vaccines against the deadly disease.
Known for shrugging off the COVID-19 pandemic and casting doubt on the ability of the vaccines to protect the people from the virus, Apley, who died at 45, now is part of the tally representing the death toll due to the pandemic.
In a statement, GoFundMe, which created a campaign to raise funds to defray the cost of Apley’s medical expenses, stated that the Dickinson City Councilor was first admitted to the hospital on Sunday after exhibiting “pneumonia-like symptoms.” Apley was later found positive for COVID-19. He was then sedated and placed on a ventilator.
Aside from him, his wife Melissa and their baby boy also tested positive for the virus. They were, however, lucky enough not to be hospitalized.
Interestingly, just two days before he was taken to the hospital, Apley even shared a Facebook post casting doubt over the COVID-19 vaccine’s efficacy. He went further by saying that these vaccines are useless.
Sometime in April, Apley also caught public attention when he made a side comment to an uploaded news article about a doctor who claimed that the Pfizer vaccine is “efficacious for at least 6 months.”
Apley’s comment on Twitter explicitly branded the doctor as “an absolute enemy of a free people.”
Previously, he also posted on social media his intent to take part in a “mask burning” party.
Relatedly, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stood firm on its previous stance that COVID-19 vaccines are safe, effective, and reduce one’s risk of severe illness. The agency also appealed anew for the public — aged 12 and above — to consider vaccination, citing around 98 to 99 percent of those who have caught the virus are unvaccinated people.
The CDC also renewed its call for both vaccinated and unvaccinated people to wear masks in public to prevent the virus’ spread.
In a statement, the Galveston County Republican Party called Apley’s death “a tragedy.”
“Our hearts mourn for him and our thoughts and prayers are with his wife Melissa and their families. Scott was a hard worker; and deeply committed to the betterment of his community, including his activities with the Republican Party. He was an advocate for liberty, limited government, and the highest ideals of American Exceptionalism,” the statement read.
Figures representing new infections are rapidly piling up in Texas due to the emergence of the Delta variant. Accordingly, this variant is deemed 60 percent more infectious than its previous forms.
As of Thursday, Galveston County recorded 45,499 COVID-19 cases with 400 COVID-related deaths. Texas has recorded over 3.1 million cases and more than 53,500 deaths since the onset of the pandemic.