A November Washington wedding ceremony has now been linked to the deaths of 7 nursing home residents
Health officials in Grant County, Washington, have confirmed that a November wedding that broke public health protocol is responsible for the deaths of seven nursing home residents in two separate facilities. The wedding had more than 300 attendees and resulted in at least 30 coronavirus cases.
“Our investigations have determined that there were long term care staff who tested positive for COVID-19 who attended the large wedding in Ritzville,” health authorities wrote in a news release, stating that “because staff in these facilities care for entire units, direct contact with associated patients is not known.”
Each of the residents in the long-term care facilities was in their 70s, 80s, and 90s and were, as many patients in these facilities are, high-risk for COVID-related complications. What that does not mean, however, is that because these people were old and had existing health issues, their COVID deaths matter less.
Health officials confirmed that a few staff members at both facilities attended the wedding in question thanks to contact tracing, and will further investigate the incident as cases are traced back to it.
The 300-person wedding, which is a lot of people for a wedding not during a pandemic, was held on Nov. 7 at a private location in the rural town of Ritzville, according to authorities. The huge event absolutely violated state guidelines, which currently limit wedding ceremonies to no more than 30 people.
And because people just can’t stop, won’t stop holding large weddings in the middle of a death plague, this isn’t the only wedding superspreader event. A small Maine wedding held over the summer, where less than 60 people were in attendance, led to 176 cases of COVID-19 and seven deaths — of nursing home residents.
A maskless Ohio wedding infected over half the guests in attendance with coronavirus last month. Neither the bride nor the groom thought it was a big deal to gather a bunch of people indoors, without masks, during a pandemic.
As the granddaughter of someone in a long-term care facility that has been ravaged by COVID-19, let me say this: If a wedding superspreader event is the reason my grandma dies without a single family member with her, I will spend the rest of my life hunting down every single person who attended so I can ruin theirs. That is a solemn vow.
Like almost every state in the U.S., in Washington state, cases are on the rise. Hospitalizations have increased by about 20 percent, according to The Washington Post. Deaths have risen by about 167 percent.
There are less harmful ways to let everyone know you’re a self-centered, spoiled asshole than by holding a wedding and inadvertently killing our elder population. Please, don’t do this.