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Published on June 03, 2021

Liberty Student Advocates for COVID Vaccine

He spent 20 days in ICU.


The youngest person treated in the intensive care unit (ICU) at Cone Health’s COVID-only hospital was a 20-year-old Liberty University senior. He missed a month of classes when his campus dorm experienced a significant number of COVID-positive residents in October. 

David Li

Liberty Student David Li

Now, eight months later, David Li, now 21, still is restricted from strenuous activities he enjoyed prior to his hospitalization, like intramural sports. 

The business administration major with a minor in biblical studies and history says he made the two-hour drive from Lynchburg, Virginia, to Greensboro for the weekend when he wasn’t feeling well. In fact, when the 2018 Grimsley High graduate went to the emergency department, he took his schoolbooks with him. 

“I thought I would keep up with my assignments,” recounts Li, “but I felt too bad to do it.” 

His books stayed with him in ICU at the Green Valley campus – all 20 days. While professors and classmates were understanding and helpful, Li says he mostly put pressure on himself to keep up. 

Li holds several leadership positions on campus and will graduate a semester early in December 2021.

He is now back in Greensboro for the summer. Given his experience with COVID-19, he is an advocate for those in his age group to get the vaccine. In fact, he is scheduled to receive his second dose of the COVID vaccine June 1. 

“I have no idea how I got COVID,” says Li. “What I do know is I never want to be that sick again and I don’t want anyone I know to get it either.”