After her long-time 26-year-old boyfriend died of COVID-19, Lounaeha Young decided to get the vaccine in his honor and tell their story.
"We look at pictures. We look at videos every day and he just point and says 'that's my daddy,'" Young said of her 3-year-old son Legend, remembering his father, Solomon Deloach.
The 26-year-old father was diagnosed with COVID in late July and passed away four days after entering the hospital. Young said Deloach was not vaccinated against the virus and had underlying health conditions.
"I never knew that at 26, someone that I planned to spend the rest of my life is no longer here," Young said. "I would never have thought that, ever."
Deloach managed the environmental services team at Advocate Sherman Hospital in Elgin. The hospital said he was considered to be a "rising star" and made the near two-hour commute from Wisconsin for several months.
Now, Young said she wants the world to know their story.
"After Solomon passed away, it made me think I don’t want to have my son have no parents, and this is very important for me," Young said. "So as soon as I was available, I got up and I got vaccinated."
She received her second dose of the COVID vaccine Wednesday, calling it a "memorial to Solomon."
"I feel like I’m doing something," Young said. "I’m doing something right and that’s all I want to do."