91-year-old goes viral with a very British response to getting his Covid jab

8 December 2020, 17:38 | Updated: 8 December 2020, 17:46

Martin Kenyon's heartwarming interview went viral after being posted online
Martin Kenyon's heartwarming interview went viral after being posted online. Picture: CNN
Nick Hardinges

By Nick Hardinges

A 91-year-old man who was among the first in the world to receive the Covid vaccine has gone viral after saying in a heartwarming interview: "There's no point in dying now."

Londoner Martin Kenyon was stopped by CNN correspondent Cyril Vanier outside Guy's Hospital in the heart of the capital shortly after receiving the Pfizer jab.

Vanier, who found the 91-year-old by chance, asked Mr Kenyon to explain how he had booked his vaccination and the process involved.

In a truly understated fashion, the pensioner, who has garnered love and praise on social media after the interview was viewed more than 1.2 million times, began telling Vanier his story.

He said: "I rang up Guy's Hospital, which I know very well as I've lived in London most of my grown-up life, and I said 'What's this thing you're doing, the vaccination?' and they said 'Yes'.

"They spent time asking me questions about this and that, not very interesting, and I said 'Yes, no, yes, no' and they said 'Well come at half-past 12'.

"Of course I couldn't damn well find anywhere to park my car so I was late.

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"I got inside and they duly put me on the list and I went off and had a rather nasty lunch and then came back and they were ready for me.

"And no, it didn't hurt at all. I didn't know the needle had gone in until it came out. It was painless."

Asked how he felt about being one of the first people in the country to receive the jab, Mr Kenyon replied: "In the world!"

He then added: "I don't think I feel much at all, except that I hope that I'm not going to have the b****y bug now.

"I don't intend to have it because I've got granddaughters and I want to live a long time to enjoy their lives."

Asked if he had been able to see much of his family in 2020, the 91-year-old said: "No, not lately. I've not hugged them but I'm going to for Christmas."

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Mr Kenyon told the CNN correspondent he had not yet let his family know about being vaccinated because he "forgot" and "didn't have time to ring up".

"I'm going home to tell them now. Nobody knows. You're the first to know," he added.

The pensioner then wrapped up his segment with one of his most heart-warming comments, saying: "There's no point in dying now when I have lived this long is there? I don't plan to anyway."

When the interview finished, CNN anchor Poppy Harlow responded to Vanier saying Mr Kenyon had left her "beaming from ear to ear" and "applauding" what the 91-year-old had said.

She later tweeted: "Martin MADE MY DAY!"

People on social media were quick to show their love for the pensioner, with one Twitter user saying: "What a charming man.

"At 91 drove himself to the hospital in London, arranged to get the vaccination, had a 'nasty lunch', got innoculated, received a card as proof, and has no intention of dying now. Yes, interview wins the day."

Another jokingly said: "I want to know what his 'nasty lunch' was now."

One person wrote: "People like this gentleman are one of the reasons why I am vigilant in wearing a mask, social distance & wash my hands.

"The deniers are so willing to write-off the elderly and consider them disposable.

"His generation has so much love, laughter & wisdom to share."

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