A Jefferson County father spent more than 75 days, nearly half of them comatose, in the hospital fighting COVID-19 complications, and as Kentucky sees a rise in cases, he and his family are making a plea to the community.Chis Allen told WLKY News on Monday that the public can follow “simple” steps to avoid the devastating changes he and his family have experienced. “I never experienced anxiety before. It brought me to tears every day. I thought I was going to drown in my own lack of oxygen,” Allen said.His breaths during the interview were noticeably laborious. He told WLKY’s Marvis Herring that his lung capacity was currently at about 45% and his kidneys were operating at about 30%, according to his doctors.“It’s a blessing because I can say that I have 45% lung capacity and my kidneys are functioning without support,” Allen said.Despite having to learn how to stand, move, talk and breathe all over again, Allen said that prayer and positivity helped him keep pushing.WLKY News was there as nurses wheeled him out of the hospital in late August. Allen said he could not stand on his own and also required an oxygen tank.His wife, Gina Allen, has also survived COVID-19. For her, there were no lasting effects, she said.Gina Allen said she began spreading the word about the seriousness of the virus with unplanned elevator conversations.“Somebody will walk in with their mask and the first thing they’ll say is, ‘I don’t know about you, but I am so sick of these masks,’ and so the first couple encounters I kind of laughed and very gently said, ‘Me too, but my husband almost died,” Allen said. “I don’t say it to be mean or anything like that, but just to be aware.I know everyone is sick of them, but it really is so, so important.”The Allen family’s firsthand experiences with the virus are ongoing. That’s why they are calling for Kentuckians to wear masks, move events outdoors and take health officials’ recommendations seriously.“I don’t think we’ve seen the worst of it,” Allen said.“I can only tell you what I went through and what I put my family through,” he added later. “If I can save one person from having to experience that, then it’s worth talking to you guys today.”Since his diagnosis, Allen has lost 60 pounds, he said.Allen no longer requires oxygen for everyday tasks, he said.His first pulmonary therapy appointment is set for this Tuesday.

A Jefferson County father spent more than 75 days, nearly half of them comatose, in the hospital fighting COVID-19 complications, and as Kentucky sees a rise in cases, he and his family are making a plea to the community.

Chis Allen told WLKY News on Monday that the public can follow “simple” steps to avoid the devastating changes he and his family have experienced.

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“I never experienced anxiety before. It brought me to tears every day. I thought I was going to drown in my own lack of oxygen,” Allen said.

His breaths during the interview were noticeably laborious.

He told WLKY’s Marvis Herring that his lung capacity was currently at about 45% and his kidneys were operating at about 30%, according to his doctors.

“It’s a blessing because I can say that I have 45% lung capacity and my kidneys are functioning without support,” Allen said.

Despite having to learn how to stand, move, talk and breathe all over again, Allen said that prayer and positivity helped him keep pushing.

WLKY News was there as nurses wheeled him out of the hospital in late August.

Allen said he could not stand on his own and also required an oxygen tank.

His wife, Gina Allen, has also survived COVID-19. For her, there were no lasting effects, she said.

Gina Allen said she began spreading the word about the seriousness of the virus with unplanned elevator conversations.

“Somebody will walk in with their mask and the first thing they’ll say is, ‘I don’t know about you, but I am so sick of these masks,’ and so the first couple encounters I kind of laughed and very gently said, ‘Me too, but my husband almost died,” Allen said. “I don’t say it to be mean or anything like that, but just to be aware.I know everyone is sick of them, but it really is so, so important.”

The Allen family’s firsthand experiences with the virus are ongoing. That’s why they are calling for Kentuckians to wear masks, move events outdoors and take health officials’ recommendations seriously.

“I don’t think we’ve seen the worst of it,” Allen said.

“I can only tell you what I went through and what I put my family through,” he added later. “If I can save one person from having to experience that, then it’s worth talking to you guys today.”

Since his diagnosis, Allen has lost 60 pounds, he said.

Allen no longer requires oxygen for everyday tasks, he said.

His first pulmonary therapy appointment is set for this Tuesday.

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