What it was like administering the first COVID-19 vaccines, according to a local nurse

On the morning of Dec. 15, Meshoca Williams got ready for work as normal. She showered and got dressed. She did her makeup. And then—her kids filmed a TikTok video.

After all, they had to record the beginning of their mom’s big day. Williams’ family cheered her on before she drove to Ochsner Medical Center, where she would administer the first COVID-19 vaccines in Baton Rouge.

It felt like the whole city was watching as Williams administered many of the first doses of Pfizer’s vaccine to the medical center’s employees. The city’s first health care workers to get the vaccine were full of emotion and gratitude.

But Williams’ favorite reaction was from pharmacist Joan Broussard.

“She and I just laughed and laughed. She just kept telling me thank you. And I said, no, thank you,” Williams recalls.

Read on for more of Williams’ story, which originally appeared in the February 2021 issue of 225.