TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Vincent Aguilar keeps bouncing back after COVID-19 knocks him down, proving why he’s is the Heart and Sol of Arizona.
“The first time it was very painful - severe body aches, nauseous, couldn’t leave bed,” said Aguilar, a behavioral health specialist.
He works with patients in the COVID unit. He’s also battled the virus twice.
“Still can’t taste anything, shortness of breath,” said Aguilar. “I still have difficulty where at times I have got to sit down. I have to catch my breath.”
But, letting the virus win - even as it hit again - was not an option.
“For me it was I have to get better because people need me. It was that simple,” said Aguilar. “I have a mission. I’m not going to let this take me down. I’m going to prove that I can get better so I can help out my patients.”
Even after recovering the second time, Aguilar isn’t getting a break from the virus. He still spends each day battling the mental health crisis strengthened by the pandemic.
“I just want to be able to help, I want to be able to say I’ve made a difference,” said Aguilar. “We have patients that are coming in that are detoxing or just suffering from mental illness or they’re maybe feeling suicidal.”
Agular says the number of patients he sees daily has nearly doubled. But, he says the rising number of patients will not affect his quality of care.
“We have a good understanding of, ‘Hey, it sucks. I get it, but you’re not alone. I’m going to sit here with you for the 12-hours that I’m working and were going to work through this together,’” said Aguilar.
To those who know him best, Aguilar is a pillar of selflessness.
Thanks to Casino Del Sol, we were able to present Aguilar with a $300 Visa gift card to say thank you for what he has done for our community.
“Wow, thank you so much, This means so much,” said Aguilar. “Not to sound cliché but I’ll probably give back. I know a few people who could use some stuff right now so I’ll probably help them out.”
If you have someone you think embodies the “Heart and Sol of Tucson,” please nominate them on our website.