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First vaccines in The Pas issued to St. Pauls’s residents


It started with a routine Calm Air flight to The Pas on January 12th, but there was nothing routine about the cargo. Calm Air was delivering the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine to the first recipients in The Pas. When this wonderful news was announced online, Calm Air Media Relations stated “Calm Air is proud to be working with our partners in the Manitoba Government and the Northern Health Region to deliver the vaccine to The Pas. It’s our privilege to play a part in this generational public health care initiative in Manitoba”.
On January 14th, Linda Paul, 72, retired teacher, became the first Northern Health Region long term care resident to receive the vaccine. Linda Paul, St. Paul’s Personal Care Home resident received her COVID vaccine from Kayley Hrabowich, RN with the Northern Health Region Public Health Focused Immunization Team. The moment was captured on video to a large round of applause.
Linda Paul was asked what she thought about being the first member of the public in the Northern Health Region to receive the COVID vaccine. “I didn’t know I was going to be first, they just picked me! Oh it’s exciting. I am a very pro-vaccine kind of person because if I had access to the polio vaccine before I got polio then, my life would have been a lot different, a lot easier.”
Asked if there was anything she would like to say to anyone unsure about getting the vaccine. “Well enough people have been vaccinated already that we’ve seen in the world and nobody has grown feathers or anything so I think that they should do it.” She stressed the importance of getting vaccines out to remote Indigenous communities as soon as possible. “I was teacher in a lot of northern communities, including Easterville, in the Arctic, and in Lynn Lake. There is so much overcrowding in those communities that COVID in one house in those communities can be a big problem. I really hope they get the vaccine to those places soon”.
Other known vaccine recipients and residents of St. Paul’s include: Darlene Ramstead, 87; Dinah Ross, 58; June Robertson, 94; Lynn and Robert Gawliuk, both 84; Marlene and Gerald Johnson (84 and 86); Sam Head, 84; Shauna Garson, 39. Myrtle Constant, 87, when asked if she consented to her picture being in the OT because she had received the vaccine, said “yes, maybe if someone sees that I got it, they will get it too".
Opaskwayak Cree Nation announced online that they received the Moderna vaccine on January 15, 2021. Crystal Krost, pandemic team member who assisted in the collection of the vaccine at the airport, stated that it was “One of the most important jobs I’ve ever done!”