National Guard member recovering after battle with COVID-19

Coronavirus

FRANKFORT, Ill. — COVID-19 wreaked havoc on a south suburban man who at his worst, was certain he wouldn’t make it. However, with the right medicine and intervention of others, he is now at home recovering from the virus.

On March 18, Capt. Jeffrey Money, 46, spiked a fever on active duty in Peoria. He was being trained for COVID-19 duty when he became ill. Alone in his hotel room, his symptoms made him a textbook case for COVID-19.

He had a fever, chills, body aches, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and a headache. 

He became delirious, passed out and stopped answering his phone.

Dr. Aaron Boyer, the base physician, got into Money’s hotel room and found him. He was rushed to the ER and spent the next six days in the ICU.

“I remember them putting me into an ice bath covering me head to toe in ice to try to and get my temperature down,” Money said.

Through it all, the health care worker in Money kept nagging at him and told him one thing over and over: He didn’t want to be intubated.

“I think I had that in my head, once that tube goes in you, it’s never coming out,” he said. “I would rather be dead than have that.”

While family prayed, doctors put Money on an anti-malaria drug as well as an antibiotic. In just two days, he was suddenly on the fast path to recovery. And in no time at all, he was on his way home to Frankfort.

Now he’s at home just trying to get better and look forward, not back at the virus closing in on our communities one by one. The unsuspecting health care worker and National Guardsman is simply grateful to be alive.

His commanding officer and others are amazed at his rapid recovery.

Doctors don’t know for sure but want to attribute to Money’s rapid recovery to his prior good health and the medications he was given early in the game.

He was the first COVID-19 patient to be released from this one particular hospital. They want him to donate plasma that hope will help some of the sickest patients there.

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