CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — A Corpus Christi boy who turned 12-years-old this week wanted only one thing for his birthday - a COVID-19 vaccination.
Edward Russell turned 12 on Tuesday.
His Great Aunt, Violet Russell-Edwards, said that every time they would visit the Pediatric Center, Edward would always ask to get the COVID-19 Vaccination.
Edward was only 11-years-old at the time and wasn't eligible.
On Tuesday, that all changed and he was finally able to make his birthday wish come true.
His great aunt took him to the Pediatric Center, located on SPID, and it was there, that staff administered the shot.
Edward, being the brave kid that he is, didn't even flinch.
The family says it's not just about keeping Edward and his family safe, he hopes that by publicly getting his vaccination, he could encourage kids at his school and other kids his age to get the vaccine.
"They keep saying that they're gonna get the vaccine, but they really don't. I keep trying to encourage them to get the vaccine," said Edward.
"That's the one thing I'm so excited about, that, for a 12-year-old child to want to come out and get the vaccine and encourage other African American children to do the same thing. He and I talk about the numbers being high for people of color, and so, we want to make sure that he is an example," said Violet Russell-Edwards.
Edward's great aunt says Edward's father has cancer and the family has been working COVID protocols ever since last year.
She said so far, no one in their family, that they know of, has COVID and has gotten sick enough from it.
Mayor Paulette Guajardo and the Corpus Christi Independent School District have teamed up to host Teen Mobile Vaccination Program, it's an initiative to offer vaccines to students ages 12 and older with parental permission. The Mayor’s Teen Mobile Vaccination Program (Teen MVP) administered by the City/County Public Health District will visit all Corpus Christi Independent School District (CCISD) middle schools and high schools. Students, teachers, staff, and parents may choose any location to attend regardless of affiliation to specific schools. The City of Corpus Christi and Nueces County Public Health Department will be administering Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. Two consent forms are required for all students. Additional dates and locations will be made available monthly as this program is designed to reach every CCISD middle and high school.
If you'd like more information on the COVID-19 vaccine guidelines for children and teens visit the CDC website here.