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Vaccinated man who got severely ill with a Covid variant is released from the hospital

AMBRIDGE, Pa. — After 22 days in the hospital, Joe Pucci of Ambridge is home at last.

He was diagnosed with the Delta variant of Covid-19, despite being fully vaccinated.

“I was real real shocked, I couldn’t believe it,” Pucci said. “But with help from the doctors at the VA Hospital, I’m home. I am so happy.”

The 73-year-old said he was experiencing some Covid-19 symptoms on his birthday on June 21, and went to the Pittsburgh VA Medical Center.

>>RELATED STORY: Local veteran, fully vaccinated against Covid-19, remains hospitalized with Delta variant

“When I first got there, I didn’t think I was going to make it,” Pucci said. “I was sweating, I had a fever of 103 and I was shaking like I was in a block of ice.”

Pucci was a marine in the Vietnam War and says he’s a fighter.

With support from his wife and daughter, he got a lot better. He was discharged Monday night but is now using an oxygen machine to help him breathe.

He still doesn’t know how he contracted the virus but says getting the Pfizer vaccine may have saved his life.

“For all three of the vaccines they are highly effective in preventing severe disease hospitalization and death,” infectious disease expert Dr. Dave Weber said.