‘Can I hug you?’ COVID-19 survivor returns to personally thank ICU staff

Her story of survival is incredible, but it’s not one she would be able to tell if not for the men and women serving at the intensive care unit at Piedmont Fayette Hospital.

Andrionna Williams spent more than 90 days on the second-floor ICU at the Fayetteville hospital. Her critical care team said she was the sickest of those they saw during the COVID-19 pandemic’s third wave. She also was the only survivor.

With her feeling better and standing on her own, Williams returned to that very floor, that very hospital where she spent three months battling the virus.

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"Yeah, I don’t know how y’all do it. But keep on doing it," she told the staff through her mask.

FOX 5 got to meet each member of the staff on Tuesday as Williams thanked them.


Andrionna Williams hugs a member of the ICU staff at Piedmont Fayette Hospital who she credits with saving her life last summer during the third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. (FOX 5)

The team said she was so sick, so close to death that three times they told her family it was time to say goodbye, but each time, she came back.

While it was important for Williams to thank the team, Dr. Rahim Woolley, who treated her, said it was just as important for the team to be thanked.

"This is our most challenging surge yet, so we’re just trying to find little bits of inspiration as we can from anywhere we can find it. And this is a big, big boost for us," Dr. Wooley said. "Mentally, this is everything this is the reason we do what we do."

As for Williams, she believes the ICU staff are the hands of a higher power.

"I know that it was God, but it was these doctors and these nurses that saved my life," Williams said. "And like I explained to them, my kids, I taught everything to, except how to live without me. So, them not giving up on me and making sure I return back home means the world to me."

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