TARRANT COUNTY, Texas — It's been a pretty isolating year for William Cobb and his Arlington family.
And while other preteens might be back in school or playing sports, the almost-12-year-old William remains quarantined at home, with no visitors besides family or medical aides. The little boy, who loves music and people, has a rare form of muscular dystrophy and is severely immunocompromised, his parents said. His twin brother, who passed away years ago, had the same diagnosis.
"He died from complications that began with a common cold. So you can imagine what the effect on [William] would be if he were to get COVID," said dad Matt.
Children overall have fared well with COVID-19, but parents of special needs or immunocompromised children aren't taking any chances. The Cobbs have been hunkered down since the start of the pandemic. They're not sending William to school or seeing people from outside their home, and that won't change until their son can be vaccinated.
It's the same story for Kendall Briggs and her parents Jocalyn and Justin in Mansfield. Kendall, who's about to turn 13, has cerebral palsy, Type 1 diabetes and epilepsy.
"Really any illness on Kendall is way worse than it is for most people," said Jocalyn.
That's why news of Pfizer's vaccine trial success in kids 12 through 15 has some special needs families hopeful in a big way. Pending FDA approval, some believe the vaccines could be available soon.
"If it's coming out this summer, she could possibly do summer school and get back to a regular routine in the fall when school starts again," Justin said. "So it's been a big relief."
Williams's parents said the same thing.
"Absolutely, 100 percent this will change our lives," the Cobb family said.
The children have missed more than a year of social interaction and normalcy.
Finally, that could be changing.