Former LSU baseball coach and athletic director Skip Bertman and his wife, Sandy, tested positive for COVID-19, one of their daughters confirmed Monday afternoon. They are experiencing mild symptoms and expect to make a full recovery.
The couple, both 83, received vaccinations earlier this year. The family said the shots protected them from more severe cases, and they encouraged everyone who hasn’t gotten a vaccine to do so.
“The reason why my parents can walk away from this is because they are vaccinated,” said Bertman’s daughter, Lori. “I don’t know if my dad wasn’t vaccinated he could’ve survived COVID.”
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Bertman has multiple pre-existing conditions that put him at risk. He began feeling general flu-like symptoms and coughing last week, his daughter said. Sandy Bertman developed mild symptoms a few days later. They then took at-home coronavirus tests that confirmed their suspicions.
On Monday, the Bertmans received monoclonal antibody infusion therapy to treat their symptoms, their daughter said. They are both expected to return home by Monday evening.
Eligible for the first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, Bertman and his wife received their shots in January. Bertman encouraged others to get theirs, saying at the time in a recorded video, “It’s easy. It’s safe. I can’t imagine anyone not getting the shot.”
LSU put out a brief but impactful message on social media Friday regarding the football team’s coronavirus vaccination rate.
Though the Bertmans remained careful, coronavirus cases have rapidly increased in Louisiana, with 1,984 patients hospitalized across the state, according to the Louisiana Department of Health’s update at noon Monday. Another 8,705 new confirmed cases were reported over the weekend. Of the state’s total estimated population, 37% of people are fully vaccinated.
“The reason why Skip got COVID is because people haven’t gotten vaccinated,” Bertman’s daughter said. “The reason he’s going to be OK is because Skip is vaccinated.”
As they recover, the Bertmans will have to quarantine at home for the next 10 to 14 days.
“They’ll be watching baseball and ‘Ted Lasso,’” Bertman’s daughter said. “Leave goodies at the door.”