Florida woman comes out of retirement to work in COVID-19 unit

Dorothy Dozier was the first person to receive the vaccine at AdventHealth Orlando

ORLANDO, Fla. – A patient area cleaner at AdventHealth said she never thought she would go back to work after she retired.

Dorothy Dozier, 64, said she envisioned playing with her 19 grandchildren and spending time with them during her retirement.

When the pandemic hit, she all of a sudden found herself, at a risky age, working in the highest risk unit at AdventHealh Orlando.

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“You listen to the media, listen to the news, how terrible this thing was, you know, and my health was good,” Dozier said. “I felt like I’m the right one, I can do this, Lord, I could do this.”

Dozier said she knew it was time to come out of retirement and back into the hospital.

“I felt like my mission from God wasn’t finished,” Dozier said.

As a patient area cleaner, Dozier said she sanitizes and takes care of the rooms.

Her job is much more than that.

“It’s not only the work; I try to touch others’ lives, especially those who are in the hospital, lift them up,” Dozier said.

Dozier said she remembered her first day working in the COVID-19 unit.

“I’ll never forget the first room I stepped in; I stepped back and I said, oh my God, Lord, protect me, and I just felt something that was like I got you, go ahead,” Dozier said.

Dozier’s bravery and kindness were rewarded; she made history becoming the first person to receive the COVID-19 vaccine at AdventHealth Orlando.

Dozier said she plans to continue working as long as she can.

About the Author:

Lauren Cervantes was born and raised in the Midwest but calls Florida her second home. She joined News 6 in August 2019 as a reporter.