Lisa Walton, a registered nurse in the Emergency Department at the Central Vermont Medical Center in Berlin, was selected at random out of a group of nominated CVMC employees to join 75 other vaccinated medical workers across New England as the guests of the New England Patriots at Super Bowl LV in Tampa, Fla.
Walton is well known throughout the hospital for her cheerful disposition and “can do” attitude – she also happens to be a huge football fan. Her favorite team is the New England Patriots.
“I got the call from my supervisor over the weekend, and I couldn’t believe it,” said Walton. “In my mind, being first in line to get the vaccine as a frontline worker was privilege in itself. I never imagined getting vaccinated would lead to this opportunity. My first-ever trip to Gillette Stadium to watch the Patriots was actually planned for this year but was cancelled due to the pandemic. This more than makes up for it. When you have a chance to get the vaccine, take it. The more people we have vaccinated the faster we can get back to doing the things we love.”
Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft said in part, “[I]t’s an honor for us to celebrate these healthcare workers by giving them a well-deserved break for a day and an opportunity to enjoy the Super Bowl, a reality that is only made possible because of the vaccines. We hope that in doing so, others are also encouraged to get vaccinated as they are able.”
In addition to tickets to the game, each of the honorees will fly on the Patriots private plane, attend a Miley Cyrus concert, and receive a $100 gift card to spend at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa.
Walton is one of four honorees from Vermont. Christopher Petry, RN, of the Southwestern Vermont Medical Center in Bennington, Lyndi Medico, RN, of the Northeastern Vermont Regional Hospital in St. Johnsbury, and Kristin Baker, RN, of the University of Vermont Medical Center in Burlington will also be traveling to Tampa. The group plans to thank the Kraft family and the Patriots with a gift of maple products.