Man who tested positive for coronavirus twice urges people to take it seriously


Carter Wright is a 29 year-old photographer and graphic designer who lives in Nashville. He’s getting attention in the media for his open and eye-opening post revealing that he tested positive for coronavirus a second time recently after seemingly recovering from the virus in March. He’s careful to say that we shouldn’t take his case as medical fact, that the virus affects everyone differently, and that he didn’t have an antibodies test so he doesn’t know if he’s supposed to be immune or not. However he definitely tested positive in March after an ill-advised trip to New York City, then he got a sore throat and fever and tested positive again this last weekend. Here’s what he wrote and his Instagram post about it is below:

For those that don’t know I tested positive for coronavirus in March. I naively took a trip to NYC right before everything went to sh-t. I was there the day Broadway shut down. I got home and two days later started showing symptoms. Started as a sore throat then had body aches and a low grade fever.

Eventually I had a cough bad enough to finally get approved for a test. The cough lasted a few days after my positive result, but mostly I was doing ok quarantining at home at that point. Overall it was like a mild flu. It still sucked and I felt awful and the mental toll of having a disease that literally everyone in the world is talking about how it can kill you, is hard to describe. I wouldn’t wish it on anyone.

So I spend the next few months under the assumption that I am better. And even though I presume I am immune, I still take precautions because so much is unknown. I wear a mask, I socially distance. I don’t eat at restaurants, only take out. I was constantly evaluating whether any activity was worth it. If not just for my health, but if doing so contributed to the culture of ignoring science and embracing individualism over all.

This Saturday my throat started hurting once again. But this time it was so bad I could barely swallow water. At first the walk in clinic thought it could be an upper respiratory infection. Because I tested negative for Strep and negative for covid on Sunday.

Well my sore throat mostly goes away but my temperature gets up to 101.2 so my dad ends up driving me to the ER. After check in they take me to my hospital bed which was in a parking garage. Very dystopian and on brand for 2020. Did several tests and a chest x-ray and I found out last night after getting my results back I once again have covid.

So much is unknown about this virus. This is not a joke. This is not the flu. I have friends who still can’t taste or smell after getting it. I have black floaters in my eye every since I had it the first time. Even mild cases I believe can permanently affect people.

Take this seriously. Wear a mask. Wash your hands. Don’t go to that party.

[From Instagram via People]

In the caption to that post, which is below, he writes “Let me be your ‘friend that has Corona.’ Please use me to convince anyone that isn’t taking this seriously or that wants to reopen the economy regardless of loss of life.” I love his comments about how his hospital bed in the parking garage was dystopian and on brand for 2020. He’s one of us. He’s also telling us something so many people need to hear – we may not be immune even if we had this before, even if we tested positive before, and this can have long-ranging health effects we don’t even know about yet. I’m so disgusted with the people who are refusing to wear masks, who think this is overblown, and who are putting everyone else’s lives at risk with their stupidity and arrogance.

Carter told People Magazine that while he has had trolls on his post “overall I’ve received a ton of very sweet and encouraging messages.” This isn’t the first story we’ve heard about someone catching this twice. WWE announcer Kayla Braxton said she’s had it twice too and I’m sure other similar stories will come out. This is also a story from a very young, healthy guy who found this debilitating.

View this post on Instagram

Let me be your “friend that has Corona.” Please use me to convince anyone that isn’t taking this seriously or that wants to reopen the economy regardless of loss of life. I say all of this not for sympathy, but to put a face with this pandemic if you don’t have one already. . And I am doing ok today. I luckily have a good support system and my parents are in town (and my mom is a nurse). EDIT: Don’t take my case as medical fact. I’m still learning about what’s happening to me. Every person I’ve talked to that has had COVID has had a different story. All I know is I tested positively twice after getting better after the first time. I didn’t take the antibodies test unfortunately so I don’t know if I should have been immune. Basically this virus is insane. We are still learning. Take it seriously. ✌️

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30 Responses to “Man who tested positive for coronavirus twice urges people to take it seriously”

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  1. Gina says:

    As an American who works in healthcare industry, it’s annoying and frustrating and angers me how people are not taking this seriously. Our Healthcare workers are working their a%$ off right now. We are worried about their mental health and PTSD for them.

    In other news, I recently heard that the antibodies only stay in someone’s system for about eight weeks.

    • ME says:

      I heard the same thing. Research is showing you are only immune to the virus for around 2 months. It seems the second time you catch it your symptoms are worse. This might explain why some people are asymptomatic and others get deathly ill. Maybe the more times you catch the virus, the deadlier it becomes for you. What worries me is this young man said he took all precautions and still caught it. That is scary. But then again, the virus is said to be airborne and can linger in the air for hours ready for someone to breathe in. I have also heard it can enter through the eyes. This is all so scary and it makes me furious to see people having parties and walking around without masks on. F*ck them.

      • Agirlandherdog says:

        Mucus membranes – eyes, nose, mouth. Anywhere you have mucus membranes can provide a path for the virus.

    • escondista says:

      Likewise those of us who work for the local, state, and Federal government. We literally take directives from some of the biggest sh*theads but we are working our tails off to try to help those who are affected. Please don’t think that the United States government is monolithic. It is compromised of millions of individuals who care and are working overtime to help. We care about you even if top brass doesn’t!

      • ATLMathMom says:

        Absolutely this! Mr. ATL is a federal civil servant, and the BS he has to deal with from the completely unqualified political appointees in this administration is just insane. He has luckily been able to WFH since there were several cases of coronavirus in his bldg. But he has been working his tail off to support his employees, while dealing with the insanity of the administration. The head of his office actually has to collate a daily report of the activities of the employees while they WFH. As if they were freakin’ kindergartners.

    • Marie says:

      Thank you. I am not American, German. I went to a meet up yesterday and there was this guy, started/owns two companies, successful grown man. When we started talking Corona he went on and on how the entire world is just overreacting and this is just like the flu….I didn’t know how to react.

    • Wow2 says:

      As a canadian who works in the healthcare system, I’m confused by this. We were told by our ID specialists that once a person has the virus they will ALWAYS test positive. Weve discharged people who had it, recovered, still tested positive but because they no longer displayed symptoms they were no longer considered an active case…. yet I keep seeing these stories like this or of celebs who had it and then someone tested negative when cleared. Something doesnt add up…

    • Kkat says:

      At my hospital and this “theory” is going around that it may not be people getting it twice or three times, but they are getting a re-occurrence. It could very well be both. But people (doctors) are thinking it might be like shingles, malaria, dengue fever. Where is can go hide in your spinal fluid/organs then SURPRISE pop back up again.

  2. julia says:

    Unfortunately, the latest medical researches are discovering that immunity seems to only last for a few weeks/months before fading away. Obviously not a great news in the search of a vaccine… come on, we need some kind of good news at some point :(

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/jul/12/immunity-to-covid-19-could-be-lost-in-months-uk-study-suggests

  3. Alexandria says:

    The sad thing is there would still be people saying he is an actor and this is a hoax and that the mainstream media is pushing a left, deep state, antifa agenda.

  4. Tootsie McJingle says:

    I’m still not understanding how people think this is overblown or no big deal. One of the worst arguments I’ve heard is that this whole thing is a ploy to hurt the elections. Guess what? The rest of the world who is also affected by this doesn’t care about our friggin’ elections!! Gah! People are stupid.

    • LittlePenguin says:

      As a Canadian, we do care about your elections, in that we really, really want an adult to be running the show in the USA. I too have heard how this virus that has taken much of the world down is a hoax, but to those people, and to people who don’t want to mask up, I ask them whey would we want to crash our economy, and hurt millions of people and have people die? That usually shuts them up.

  5. JoJo says:

    The reality is, no one knows yet, but this does not tell the bigger picture story. Many epidemiologists/infectious disease experts have come out in response to the UK antibody study saying that just because certain antibodies aren’t found circulating in the blood, it doesn’t mean you don’t have some level of immunity. They’re saying there are many other mechanisms in the body, including other types of cells that have “memories” and commonly play a role in immunity, and that it’s still very likely the body will “remember” the virus, potentially resulting in less severe symptoms. They are also saying they’re still very optimistic that antibodies, including monoclonal antibodies, will play a large role in both upcoming treatments and vaccines.

    Also, there are serious questions as to whether people like this truly contracted the infection a second time. I just watched multiple doctors on CNN talk about this. They are saying there is very little, if any, evidence that people are truly contracting it again. What is suspected much more strongly is that the original infection never fully went away, and that symptoms wax and wane significantly or even that a person develops long-term chronic disease based on the original infection. To compound matters, they are saying that COVID testing still has a 15-20%+ false negative rate, so people who were positive and then got retested and showed negative are often not actually negative. There are lots of cases of people’s tests being all over the place repeatedly. All of this is still a giant puzzle, and because of this, I’m not at all convinced that people are being reinfected within a month or two of their original infection.

    • Annabel says:

      That idea that maybe the original infection hasn’t really gone away makes me wonder if this virus has some similarities to Ebola. An interesting/creepy fact I came across recently is that Ebola can linger in the eyes of recovered patients for up to a year following infection. I’m not a medical expert, but the detail about this guy seeing “floaters” in his vision since his “first” infection made me think of that eye thing. Maybe Covid-19 can linger in the body and cause new flare-ups of infection later on.

      • ANA says:

        “They are saying there is very little, if any, evidence that people are truly contracting it again”
        Chinese authorities also said at the beginning of this nightmare that “they weren’t sure covid spread from one person to another” and yet here we are…we know nothing about this disease, only that it is killing a lot of people.

      • Kkat says:

        I was saying upthread that at my hospital we are wondering if it is reoccurring, Like shingles, dengue fever it goes and hides in your spinal fluid or organs, ect. And like dengue fever people are getting it worse on the second and third rounds of it

      • JoJo says:

        Right, many viruses can stick around in your body for long periods of time or forever. Just take Herpes – once you have it, you have it forever. Same with HIV. Sure, it can reach undetectable levels with antiviral treatment, but it’s still in your body. So, it wouldn’t be out of the norm for COVID-19 to be sticking around for a long period of time in your body, sometimes undetectable and other times detectable. We just don’t know yet. And testing results are still not at all near 100% accuracy. These two things together make me think there’s a lot more going on than people getting reinfected twice within just a few months of each other. I still think it’s the original infection showing itself.

        And the Oxford University vaccine being worked on right now and to be manufactured by AstraZeneca actually works through two mechanisms – one is neutralizing antibodies and the other is T cells, which are another major source of immunity/memory and protection. This is why actual epidemiologists are saying even if antibodies go away or are reduced after a few months, it’s unlikely that you wouldn’t have another layer of some level of protection through your T cells.

  6. Case says:

    It really terrifies me that this guy took so many precautions and still caught it. Of course he says he was “evaluating whether activities were worth it” which means perhaps he wasn’t as cautious as I’m imagining — all I do is work from home, sit outside, see my parents, and (from a safe distance with masks) see a couple friends. I’ve been inside a store once this whole time, so my idea of precautions might be more extreme than his idea!

    • Ainsley7 says:

      It could also be that the virus can go dormant for awhile or something. He’s the first person that I have heard of testing positive a second time that was actually sick with the virus. Other People who have tested positive again have tested positive for dead virus and weren’t actively infected.

  7. Ferdinand says:

    I just need a break in all this. Some good news, sole sort of light at the end of the tunnel. This just fuels and add anxiety to the whole situation. The minute I feel something different about my body, I think of the worst. This is just too much.

    • Case says:

      I agree. I think I need to just take a break from the headlines and try to unplug more, because the past couple weeks my mental health has not been faring well. I wake up with bad allergies and am convinced I caught the virus. I worry so much about my friends and family who are being forced back to work. And I’m just mind-boggled and frustrated with the national narrative that we’re open for business and things need to get back to normal, which will only prolong the time we have to endure the virus and quarantine.

  8. Desdemona says:

    I am from Portugal. We have here a 31 year old woman, mother of two who has been sick for four months already, since beginning of March. She has tested negative once, inconclusive twice and eleven times positive. Her husband and children are living with her parents and she’s been alone at home. For some reason, she keeps testing positive… She’s taking her 15th test this week but she is desperate… This virus is really scary and its side long term effects are… Well… I wonder if the tests really work properly… Maybe there are more false negative and positive tests than we might think…

    • JoJo says:

      Yes, I mentioned that in my comment above. It’s been talked about over the last few weeks that COVID tests are still showing a large number of false negatives – of 15% or more (not sure about false positives.) It’s also been shown that many positive tests are picking up dead RNA (so, detecting the virus, but it is no longer actually active in the body.) The other thing they’re saying is that in some patients the virus continues to go through “blips” in the body for months and months – and they have no idea how long this could last since we’re only 6 months into the whole thing. In this case, the virus appears to be gone (so a person will test negative), but every few days, the virus sort of makes a tiny resurgence in the body (maybe not enough to make anyone experience symptoms but enough that a test detects it – and in these cases, people are experiencing a flip-flopping of negative and positive tests.) Suffice to say, no one really knows what is going on yet – and so I wouldn’t overreact to the idea that people are getting it more than once, which is purely anecdotal at this point and doesn’t seem to be supported by the scientific community … yet. (Of course, doesn’t mean it can’t happen.)

  9. Cg2495 says:

    It’s scary. I had it back in March and it was debilitating and scary. I already suffer from anxiety so this just added more stress. I apparently have the antibodies now but feel terrified of catching this disease again. I am in New York and people don’t take it seriously enough to wear mask and be more proactive.

    • Case says:

      I’m sorry you went through that but I’m glad you’re okay. I can’t imagine how terrifying it must be to actually have the virus so many people talk about being fatal. I understand many more people have it and recover just fine, but it’s hard not to jump to the worst case scenario.

  10. Amelie says:

    Ok for a second I really thought this was BJ Novak!! He looks SO MUCH like him.

    Second, I’m glad he’s sharing his story but I also hope he pulls through this. I hung out with a few people who all say they got COVID-19 because they tested positive for the antibodies a few weeks back (outside, we all social distanced). Also the people I saw had gotten months before I saw them which is why I also took the risk of going to see them since I was dying for some kind of social interaction. They all seemed to be pretty cavalier about it saying things like “Well we’re all going to get it at some point” and seemed to think because they had antibodies, that meant they were immune. I didn’t argue with them but I made sure to hold my distance and I refused to touch anything they touched. They kept asking me if I wanted chips or guacamole and I was like “No, I don’t want to put my hand into the same bag of chips that 5 other hands have been in!”

    I feel justified in my paranoia. Just because you have gotten it once doesn’t make you immune at all.

    Also I wonder what the black floaters are all about? I have floaters and I’ve had them since I was a toddler, they’re pretty common in near-sighted people like myself. I’ve had them my whole life. But black floaters? That’s a new one I’ve never heard of.

    • Kkat says:

      It’s potentially due to blood clotting. Im on a surgical IR team and we are seeing LOTS of people with little micro clots that are showing up all kids of places. This is why people are having Strokes (so many strokes)heart attacks, kidney failure and covid lungs. They get clogged with thousands of micro clots and it shuts the organ down and causes damage. We are getting MANY more strokes and VT’s, ect. in people that should not be getting them. People that are 25-55 when typically the type im talking about happens in your 80 year olds.
      It’s frightening, we will be working on one area and can actually watch more clots forming in real time in patients, the blood is “clotty”

  11. Andrea says:

    I have a friend in NC with a pregnant wife who refuses to wear a mask in public and says the entire economy should open up–let people adapt or die. He says his aunt and uncle had it and they recovered, so no biggie. He doesn’t understand why everyone is so scared. It was alarming to hear his beliefs about this.

  12. K.T says:

    What a good post from this guy! I hope he gets better soon – like us all. He may have it again or, like herpes, perhaps covid is present in small amounts and get retriggered.
    Also, some experts are saying that the virus has mutated in different strains and that some strains are 30% more infectious.

    There is so much to find out about this new virus and if it’s mutating, like many virus do, then it’s a constant learning process and we need to be cautious.

  13. CherryL says:

    There’s no definitive proof that people can contract the virus twice in such a short time-span. The testing isn’t great and there are plenty of different viruses of the corona category. He might’ve had two different kinds of viruses.