Local 4 assignment desk editor reflects on his time in vaccine trial

‘There is some light at the end of the tunnel,’

Local 4 assignment editor Matt Triplett said he wanted to do everything he could to help end the pandemic and get us back to a more normal life.

DETROIT – There are currently three COVID-19 vaccines available to the public.

That wouldn’t be possible without the hundreds of thousands of brave volunteers who have signed up to participate in the clinical trials around the world.

One of those volunteers is a member of the Local 4 family. His experience has given us an inside look at the critical research.

Nov. 18, 2020: Local 4 assignment editor shares experience with COVID-19 vaccine trial

Local 4 assignment editor Matt Triplett said he wanted to do everything he could to help end the pandemic and get us back to a more normal life.

“I am tired of watching this virus give us all one big gut punch every day,” Triplett said. “I talked to several people I trust and this is just the right thing to do.”

While most of the world has watched and waited for a vaccine, Triplett decided to help make it happen. After researching various trials, he signed up for a Pfizer vaccine study without hesitation.

For Triplett, his motivation for signing up for the trial was personal.

“I know six people that have died from it. Another six or seven I know have gotten sick from it,” he said.

He didn’t know if he was receiving the vaccine or the placebo.

When he heard Pfizer announce the vaccine was 95% effective, he was thrilled.

“It’s almost like an early Christmas present and its like finally there is some light at the end of the tunnel,” Triplett said. “And it s not the train coming at us any more, we are actually getting closer to the end now.”

After learning about the side effects other volunteers had during the trials, he suspected he had received the placebo and not the vaccine. He was right.

In January, he was notified that he had been given the placebo and was offered the chance to receive the vaccine.

On Feb. 3, he received his second dose of the Pfizer vaccine. He said his arm was a little sore and felt a light chill, but he felt great the next morning.

It’s a feeling he wants everyone to have.

“If you get your chance, please go get the vaccine,” Triplett said. “Please go get the vaccine.”

READ: Michigan COVID-19 vaccinations: How to find appointments, info on phases

Watch the video above for the full report.

READ: More coverage from The Coronavirus Crisis: One Year Later

About the Authors:

You can watch Kimberly Gill weekdays anchoring Local 4 News at 5 p.m., 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. and streaming live at 10 p.m. on Local 4+. She's an award-winning journalist who finally called Detroit home in 2014. Kim has won Regional Emmy Awards, and was part of the team that won the National Edward R. Murrow Award for Best Newscast in 2022.

Dane is a producer and media enthusiast. He previously worked freelance video production and writing jobs in Michigan, Georgia and Massachusetts. Dane graduated from the Specs Howard School of Media Arts.