'I Didn't Wear a Mask. I Should Have': Ex-COVID Skeptic's Emotional Hospital Bed Plea

A man who formerly expressed skepticism about the seriousness of COVID-19 has recorded video from his hospital bed after contracting the disease, saying, “I didn’t wear a mask. I should have.”

Chuck Stacey posted a number of video updates showing him suffering the effects of the coronavirus, an experience he described to Storyful as “horrifying”.

In the earliest of these, he says, struggling for breathe, “I didn’t wear a mask. I should have. I didn’t. I believed this was just a flu. That it was all gonna go away. That it was political. I didn’t think a mask would help.”

He goes on to say, “You don’t want to end up like me. I’m having trouble breathing. I may have to be intubated if I get any worse.”

Stacey and his wife both contracted COVID-19. In subsequent footage, Stacey suggested that people have wished him death.

He said that he was improving, and told Storyful, “I’m still in a fight but I’m getting better.”

He said that he had worn a face shield because he suffered from claustrophobia. He urged people to wear masks.

He told Storyful: "All of this started [when] my wife and I were very sick at the beginning of 2020. We both had a respiratory illness that they could not figure out what it was.

“A lot of doctors thought we had already had COVID. I have had a few very traumatic experiences in my childhood [that] have caused me to be incredibly claustrophobic. I can’t even wear rings, watches or belts. I’ve struggled with it my entire life,” Stacey said.

“My doctor came up with the idea of a face shield with social distancing and being responsible with hand sanitizer and [minimizing] my contact in the field. I own an IT company so I can work from home. It’s worked for almost a year.

“Nothing is 100% on this virus and even if I would’ve wore a mask I could’ve still gotten it. But the fact of the matter is we have to do everything that we can do to protect ourselves and to protect the people that are really at risk. I just thank God that I haven’t given this to someone and taken a life. I would not be able to handle that.”

Stacey said he wanted to share his story because, “if what is happening to me can make one person do something that might save their life I’m good with it.” Credit: Chuck Stacey via Storyful