CHICAGO (CBS) — How far would you go to get a COVID-19 vaccine?
One suburban woman will drive for six hours, to Springfield and back to get hers.READ MORE: Chicago Weather: Mainly Clear And Not As Cold Sunday Night
CBS 2’s Marie Saavedra reports that woman is not alone.
It all comes down to how desperately you want one and the flexibility in your life.
The woman CBS 2 spoke with is at great risk, and has a job that worked with her to take a day off so she can make that long drive for her first shot. And then again in a few weeks for her second.
This is the story of getting the Grimes family of Bollingbrook vaccinated. It started with husband Shawn, who works at Loyola Hospital.
“Thankfully, he’s gotten both of his vaccines so that was our first priority,” Rebecca Grimes said. “Then it was my in-laws and my mother that was the next group that we had to get done, and that happened last Friday, their first dose. So everybody else is now vaccinated, but I’m still incredibly exposed and I have a family that depends on me to be healthy.”
Healthy is something Rebecca Grimes has not always been. She’s a non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma survivor with delicate lungs whose doctors said she’d get the vaccine faster outside their office.
“I’m thankful that I found an appointment for next week. I hit refresh five times and one popped up,” she said.
On Thursday, at the end of an almost three hour drive to Springfield, she’ll get her shot at the mass vaccination site inside the Illinois State Fairgrounds. It opened Wednesday to all state residents,READ MORE: At Least 20 Shot, 2 Killed In Weekend Violence In Chicago
But it’s in Sangamon County, where Gail O’Neill is Public Health Director.
“If they’re able to make appointments, that’s great and we welcome them,” O’Neill said.
She said of the 10,000 appointments booked this week, the majority are from Sangamon County. But of those, 413 are people from Cook County, 209 from DuPage.
“We’re glad people are coming,” O’Neill said. ” I hope it’s because they know that it’s going to be a good operation.”
A good operation is important. But knowing that there’s a vaccine with your name on it is priceless to Grimes. And worth whatever time in the car it takes.
“I would go farther if I needed to, to make sure that my family and my health are protected right now,” Grimes said.
Click here for more information on the Illinois State Fair mass-vaccination site. But there’s a warning.
If they haven’t already, staff expect all of its open appointments for the coming weeks to be booked by Friday night. The focus after that will be getting those with second shots booked.MORE NEWS: Boy, 11, Shot And Wounded In West Pullman; He Is Second Child Shot In Area Within Week
But as soon as the state receives more vaccines, more spots will open up. So if you’re constantly refreshing websites and willing to drive, add that one to your list.