Tuesday, 19 Oct 2021

Covid 19 Delta outbreak: Death notice says in lieu of flowers get vaccinated

Auckland artist Ruth Cole is carrying out the wishes of her late father by placing a message in his death notice for people to get vaccinated for Covid-19 in lieu of sending flowers.

Before John Cole died on October 4, aged 95, from double pneumonia, he was double-vaccinated and keen to get a booster shot.

Ruth Cole said the reasons she composed the message in the death notice was her father, a retired engineer, brought her up to be vaccinated and she knew leading epidemiologist Rod Jackson.

“Dad was a very, very keen vaccinator. He thought it was great a vaccine had been developed because at 95 he could remember what life was like before vaccines.

“I don’t know why people are so disenfranchised from doctors and scientists and medical advice … and think some unknown entity on the internet is reliable.

“The tragedy is some of them are going to die because of this. I’m just so activated against it I’m almost a charismatic vaxxer,” said Cole.


Her goal is for 95 per cent of the population to be vaccinated so the country can go back to normal, saying there are such huge numbers of Covid globally means it is not going to go away.

“I live in Huia, West Auckland, and sadly there are quite a lot of unvaccinated people. I try to say to people it’s a very simple vaccination to be had. You get a sore arm for one day and a few people are a little bit more poorly than that, but compared to the Covid virus it is nothing,” said his daughter, who cared for her father in his latter years at his home in the coastal settlement.

Cole said her father was a very warm and engaging person and would have liked the death notice, saying he was proud and very much in tune with modern science.

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