Former WAVE 3 sports anchor among first veterans to get COVID-19 vaccine

Former WAVE 3 sports anchor among first veterans to get COVID-19 vaccine
Former WAVE 3 News sports anchor Bob Domine, an Army veteran who flew in Vietnam, received his first COVID-19 vaccine dose on Jan. 11, 2021, at the Robley Rex VA Medical Center.
Former WAVE 3 News sports anchor Bob Domine, an Army veteran who flew in Vietnam, received his first COVID-19 vaccine dose on Jan. 11, 2021, at the Robley Rex VA Medical Center. (Source: Dale Mader, WAVE 3 News)
Before beginning a 37 year career at WAVE 3 News, former sports anchor Bob Domine served as a pilot in the U.S. Army. He flew missions over Vietnam.
Before beginning a 37 year career at WAVE 3 News, former sports anchor Bob Domine served as a pilot in the U.S. Army. He flew missions over Vietnam. (Source: Dale Mader, WAVE 3 News)

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - He spent nearly four decades front and center with the public working for WAVE 3 News. Now, former sports anchor Bob Domine, who’s also a Vietnam veteran and a stroke survivor, is getting back out there and rolling up his sleeve with a goal to set an example by getting the COVID-19 vaccine.

Reaction from veterans wanting the vaccine in the first age group over 75 years old has been very encouraging according to officials at Louisville’s Robley Rex VA Medical Center, that includes a face very familiar to WAVE 3 viewers. Even with the mask on, it’s a face many folks still recognize and he’s still driving a bright yellow Mustang, with a plate that reads, ‘Domine Does it.’

“I’m doing great,” Domine said with smiling eyes behind the mask.

Eager to get his dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, Domine is still like a kid at age 77. As an Army pilot who flew during Vietnam, Domine had no hesitation pulling into the VA’s mobile clinic.

“I’m excited about this,” Domine said. “Ever since I got my appointment last week, I’ve been looking forward to this.”

As Domine pulled into the tent, VA Nurse Jennifer Morgan did a double take.

“You’re Bob Domine, aren’t you?” Morgan asked.

Morgan was thrilled to administer not only Domine’s shot, but one to her own father, Donald Kadetz, another Army veteran with pre-existing conditions. Morgan said she’s proud of her dad and all vets like Domine who want the vaccine. The two men went right after each other in the clinic line.

“It is so important that they get this shot,” Morgan said. “It is life or death, it really is.”

Dr. Amy Minix with the VA’s Vaccine Operations said it’s time those over age 70 can see their families again and not be afraid to live out the rest of their lives, doing things like playing golf or going to dinner.

“A year of sadness and a year of isolation,” Dr. Nix said of 2020, “and we are finally seeing that door open and we are walking through it.”

Domine said getting to be with his children and seven grandchildren and with the family of his fiancé Melanie once again, means everything. We asked if he had gotten to see them at all since the pandemic began.

“We had a Christmas gathering in my driveway of my condo in which we set up chairs and heaters and everybody wore masks and social distanced,” Domine said.

At the end of the gathering, Domine said the group air hugged to show some kind of affection, which was hard. Saying “it is hard for everybody,” Domine is hopeful that things will get better for American families as more people follow in the vaccine line.

“I would think the vets would lead the way,” Domine said. “You know, they’ve been through a lot more in Vietnam or Desert Storm or Korea or World War II, wherever they’ve been.”

Besides veterans getting their first dose of the vaccine, employees at VAMC who got their first round in December will be getting their second dose next week.

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