Well-Being Prevention & Cures

Baby baptized at funeral of unvaccinated mother who died of COVID-19

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Story at a glance:

  • A 35-year-old mother died on Aug. 20 several days after delivering her baby.
  • The mother had no underlying health conditions, but she had concerns about getting vaccinated while pregnant.
  • The Food and Drug Administration has approved COVID-19 vaccines for use in pregnant patients.

A 35-year-old mother died on Aug. 20 due to COVID-19 complications, several days after delivering her baby. Now, the baby is getting baptized at her mother’s funeral in Derry, Northern Ireland, the U.K.

Samantha Willis delivered her daughter, Eviegrace, and later died after a 16-day battle with the coronavirus, Business Insider reported.


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The duo’s baptism and funeral highlight the importance that pregnant women should get vaccinated, at least that is what husband and now single father Josh Willis took from this.

Father Joe Clifford led the service on Monday, saying this was his first time doing baptism and a funeral at the same time. 

“Especially when Samantha birthed forth new life just days ago, it doesn’t make sense,” Clifford told the Belfast Telegraph. “Here comes new life into the world, planned and chosen, and the excitement of looking forward to it, and it came out of this suffering body, a body which was on life support.”

“I will never let anyone forget you and I will remember all the special times and experiences we shared together,” Josh Willis said. “The children are now my main priority. All I want to do now is make Samantha proud.”

Samantha had no underlying health conditions, but she did have concerns about getting vaccinated while pregnant during a time there was no available information regarding its safety.

As Changing America previously reported, an unvaccinated, pregnant nurse died from COVID-19, leaving behind her husband and their nearly 3-year-old daughter.

According to new data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about three-fourths of pregnant people in the U.S. have not yet received a COVID-19 vaccine. The Food and Drug Administration has approved COVID-19 vaccines for use in pregnant patients, who are more likely to become severely ill if infected. 

According to the GoFundMe page, Josh Willis has since encouraged people in his family and amongst friends to get vaccinated.

Samantha Willis leaves behind three other children.


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