Fully-vaccinated Cary couple 'shocked and disappointed' after both become sick from COVID

Elaina Athans Image
Tuesday, July 27, 2021
Vaccinated Cary couple both fall ill with COVID-19
Joy McGrael and her husband Brent Eischen are both sick and dealing with COVID-19, even though they're both fully vaccinated.

CARY, N.C. (WTVD) -- A Cary couple is mystified by their current situation. Joy McGrael and her husband, Brent Eischen, are both sick and dealing with COVID-19, even though they're both fully vaccinated.

"I was definitely shocked and disappointed. I was like 'Darn, I thought I'm doing everything right,'" McGrael said.

She has a cough, can't smell or taste.

"I keep going around and picking up candles and seeing if I can smell them," McGrael said.

Eischen got COVID first last week.

"I was just shocked -- thought I was one of these unlucky people," he said.

RELATED: Vaccinated Cary man details experience with 'breakthrough' COVID-19 case

Despite getting his second Moderna shot in April, Cary resident Brent Eischen was diagnosed with COVID-19 this week.

The couple took cautions to stay safe and even began living on separate floors.

McGrael, a mom to three adult children, bought a bunch of at-home testing kits. She was using them daily and they were coming back negative.

She flew to the West Coast for work and continued getting daily tests there. The results were the same: negative.

Not long after returning home, she started feeling sick.

"Two breakthroughs in one household, I mean ... wow, really? (That was) not what I thought would happen," said McGrael.

Both still say they're happy they got vaccinated and encourage others to do the same.

"I really feel it provides a blueprint so that our body can fight off (the virus) more quickly," she said.

READ MORE: 'Breakthrough' COVID-19 cases will happen but remain rare

McGrael said she does wish she managed her expectations a little better instead of thinking she was completely protected.

"I think people expect if they get the vaccine, they're never going to get COVID. I think walking into, yes, you're still susceptible to it, you just might have it at a less severe state," she said.

The couple is hoping their story might serve as a warning to others. They suggest getting some at-home testing kits and using them ever so often to make sure you're still COVID-free.