KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Family and friends of Patrick Dalton gathered to celebrate his homecoming after spending the last several weeks in medical facilities battling COVID-19.
24-year-old Patrick Dalton went to the hospital feeling ill on March 30. He had difficulty breathing, coughing and a fever. He tested positive for COVID-19 and was also diagnosed with double pneumonia and strep throat. According to his mother, Felicia Dalton, he was treated with zithromycin and hydroxychloroquine, but his breathing did not improve.
By April 2, he was put on a ventilator.
“We had to watch him walk into the hospital alone on Monday, weak and breathless, not knowing when we would see him again. That was gut wrenching. No visiting. No holding. No touching my baby boy.”From a Facebook post by Patrick’s mother, Felicia Dalton
Patrick was not the typical COVID-19 case. He was young, healthy and had no preexisting conditions. He remained on the ventilator until April 12.
When his condition did not improve, doctors decided that he needed to be transported St. Thomas West in Nashville to be put on an ECMO machine. ECMO machines pump the patient’s blood outside of the body, giving the heart and lungs a chance to rest.
Patrick stayed at St. Thomas West from April 12 until May 14. On the 14th, he was finally given the clear to go to a rehab facility where he could be visited by his family. He stayed in rehab until May 27 and is now home with his family.
Welcome home Patrick!
After spending 46 days in different medical facilities, Patrick is now home with his family and cleared of the virus. To celebrate, family and friends gathered at his former high school, Christian Academy of Knoxville, to show him love and support.
To maintain social distancing, it was a drive by. Everyone wore PPE, each car driving by, with the passengers waving to Patrick and welcoming him home.
After seeing the scary side of the virus up close, Patrick’s family says they’re happy to have him home and healthy.
“Don’t ever think for a minute that it’s not a real disease because it is and it can be very deadly. It’s real, it’s dangerous, it almost took our son,” said Tony Dalton, Patrick’s dad.
“It was just kind of humbling knowing that somebody that was a college athlete and has always been strong and healthy and strong will power, strong mind, strong everything, strong body. To see him go through that was confusing at first but it was also kind of like a snap back to reality that this could happen to anybody,” said Alex Dalton, Patrick’s brother.
Patrick still has a ways to go before he is fully himself again, but he says the support of his family and community help him to keep going.
- Coronavirus Timeline: Knoxville sees first triple-digit rise in cases, testing event Thursday
- CHART: Tennessee Department of Health’s count of coronavirus cases by day in state
- Coronavirus in Tennessee: Active COVID-19 cases in Knox County surpass recovered case total
- Walmart to require all customers to wear masks starting July 20
- Nashville photographer in ‘disbelief’ after testing positive for COVID-19 twice
- COVID-19 hospital data will go to White House before CDC
- Florida virus deaths surge, vaccine research moves forward
- New York Gov. threatens $2,000 fine if Tennessee travelers donâ€™t give contact information
- Bars to remain closed in Nashville as COVID-19 cases climb
- What new outdoor dining permits mean for downtown businesses
- First COVID-19 vaccine tested in US poised for final testing
- Knox County Clerk at South Knoxville office tests positive for COVID-19
- Tennessee Coronavirus: State adds 1,514 COVID-19 cases and 18 new deaths
- Second Harvest Food Bank receives $200,000 UnitedHealthcare grant
- Bar Rescue’s Jon Taffer: ‘I’m not certain a lot of bars will survive this’