The son of a well-known anti-vax singer who died after catching COVID-19 intentionally has spoken out, and he’s pleading for others to not follow in his mother’s footsteps.
Hana Horka, 57, was a member of the Czech folk band Asonance, and refused to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
Her husband and son, Jan Rek, are both fully vaccinated against the virus but contracted the illness over Christmas. Horka then refused to isolate from them.
Horka instead opted to contract the virus deliberately so she would be eligible for a Czech health pass, which allows citizens access to public venues to those who provide proof of vaccination or revent recovery from the virus.
Currently in the Czech Republic, venues like cinemas, restaurants and bars are off-limits to those who are unvaccinated.
Rek told the BBC that his mother died suddenly on Sunday after her condition seemed to improve.
“She should have isolated for a week because we tested positive. But she was with us the whole time,” he told the BBC of his mother’s decision to catch the virus on purpose.
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Horka allegedly said she was feeling better on Sunday morning and prepared to go for a walk. When her back started hurting however, she went back to her bedroom. “In about 10 minutes it was all over … she choked to death.” Rek said.
“Her philosophy was that she was more okay with the idea of catching COVID than getting vaccinated.”
He revealed that his mother wouldn’t listen when family members tried to persuade her to get the vaccine, and he wanted to share his family’s story in the hopes of convincing other people to take the global pandemic seriously.
“If you have living examples from real life, it’s more powerful than just graphs and numbers. You can’t really sympathise with numbers,” he said.
He also said that anti-vax leaders had blood on their hands for spreading the misinformation: “I know exactly who influenced her … it makes me sad that she believed strangers more than her proper family.
“It wasn’t just total disinformation but also views on natural immunity and antibodies acquired through infection,” he added.
Two days before her passing, Hana Horka took to social media to tell her fans she was recovering well.
“I survived … it was intense. So now there will be the theatre, sauna, a concert … and an urgent trip to the sea.”
Asonance is one of the oldest Czech groups currently active. Horka joined the group as a vocalist in 1985, and has been featured on over a dozen released between 1992 and 2019.
There have been many live shows in Australia who have also been affected by the recent outbreak of COVID-19. You can find our list of them here.