PALM COAST, Fla. — A 9-year old from Palm Coast is getting back to her normal routine following her hospitalization shortly after catching COVID-19. Despite fighting off the virus with only mild symptoms, it left her with complications.

What You Need To Know

  • Palm Coast girl had to be hospitalized because of COVID-19

  • The 9-year-old developed bacterial pneumonia while recovering

  • Makenna Simon felt tired, had a slight cough and her oxygen levels fell

  • She spent seven days in the hospital and received a blood transfusion

  • The other family members caught COVID, too, but had been vaccinated

“It was scary, and there were doctors, they were making me get medicine,” Makenna Simon said. “I had to get treatment, a breathing thing.”

Makenna faced complications after she and her family contracted COVID-19. While her dad, Tristan, said that while they took all precautions and everyone else recovered well, Makenna did not. She ended up developing bacterial pneumonia.

“You know, you read the stories, and it is never going to be your kid,” Tristan Simon said. “My kids are healthy so it's very surreal.”

Makenna said she felt tired and had a slight cough, but her parents knew something was seriously wrong when they noticed her oxygen dip below normal levels. They rushed her to the hospital, where doctors told them she needed to be admitted.

“It’s just, it's devastating, and it's not fair for a 9-year-old to be put through that at that young of an age,” Simon said. “It's just, you know, getting stuck with needles, and you know all these people in your face scaring you and talking about your numbers all the time and you know she became very well aware and was asking what her oxygen levels were."

After seven days and a blood transfusion, Makenna was released. While she still had some recovering to do at home, her parents said they hope other mothers and fathers realize the effects COVID-19 could have on children. 

“You know, the smallest thing can turn out to be the biggest thing,” Simon said.

As for Makenna, she has been busy with homework and has handwritten notes from her classmates to raise her spirits. Now that she feels better, she said she can't wait to get back to class.

“Because I want to see my friends and my teacher,” said Makenna, while she was still completing treatment at home. 

Makenna added that she wants other children to wear masks and to tell their parents as soon as they do not feel well.

Simon said he, his wife and his older children were all vaccinated. He said he believes that helped keep their COVID-19 symptoms to a minimum.