Marfa students receive 1st-round doses of Pfizer vaccine

Photo by Maisie Crow / Marfa High School freshman Marco Ruiz receives his first dose of the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine on Friday. Ruiz was one of 54 individuals to get vaccinated at the school.

MARFA – Parents and students arrived Friday afternoon at the Marfa ISD gym to take advantage of the first round of COVID-19 vaccines available to children between the ages of 12 and 15. Earlier in the week, the Food and Drug Administration had cleared the Pfizer vaccine for emergency use in that age group.

Waiting in a line nearly the length of the gym, Liz Ruiz said she was nervous but also relieved for her son, Marco, to finally be eligible for the vaccine. Marco, a freshman at Marfa High School, said he chose not to play basketball the past school year in order to “protect himself,” but with the vaccine said he will likely join the team next year. “I hope all of my classmates get vaccinated because it’s hard to breathe in a mask,” Marco said.

Shortly after the vaccination event started, MISD Superintendent Oscar Aguerro said that 40 students had signed up ahead of time and he had seen at least five walk-ins. “I was not expecting this many kids,” said Aguerro. “I think it’s a positive thing, I think it’s going to help set our tone for instruction next year.”

Gracie Gonzales accompanied her granddaughter, Annalise Marquez, to receive her first dose of the Pfizer vaccine. “They’re young, they should be ok,” Gracie said as Annalise received the shot. 

Ultimately, the Texas Department of Health and Human Services reported a total of 54 individuals vaccinated. Most were students in the 12 to 17 range with a few adults also receiving the vaccine. Second doses will be given on June 4 at 1 p.m. in the MISD Shorthorn Gym.

Aguerro said he hopes the school will be able to host another vaccination event in August for first-round doses.