Ruth Owens, a 65-year-old Little Elm resident, received the 100,000th COVID-19 vaccine shot at 11 a.m. Thursday during the vaccination clinic at Texas Motor Speedway.
Mrs. Owens, her husband, Don, 77, and their son, Anthony, 35, traveled to the speedway for their second dose of the Moderna vaccine.
“I wasn’t expecting that when I drove up,” she said of a banner, balloons and cheers as a crowd congratulated her in front of cameras for being a recipient of the 100,000th dose. “We were just going to run through and go back home. This is awesome. I’m just really excited.”
Denton County Judge Andy Eads and several Denton County Commissioners including Precinct 1 Commissioner Ryan Williams and Precinct 4 Commissioner Dianne Edmondson greeted Mrs. Owens as they commemorated the significant milestone.
“You not only got your vaccine but you are making history in Denton County. You are Denton County’s 100,000th vaccination today,” Denton County Judge Andy Eads told Mrs. Owens shortly after she received the shot. “But we are not stopping with you. We have a lot more ahead of us.”
Commissioner Williams, who noted the Owens family lives in his precinct, asked how the process went for them. Mrs. Owens said the process has been simple from signing up on the Vaccine Interest Portal at DentonCounty.gov to going through the vaccination clinic at Texas Motor Speedway.
Mrs. Owens said she would recommend people getting the vaccine at Texas Motor Speedway.
“You have made it so easy coming through here,” she said. “It is a relief. We’ve been looking forward to it ever since the first one (dose).”
On Feb. 26, Denton County vaccinated 10,000 individuals in 8.5 hours with the help of staff and many volunteers from across the region. On Thursday, officials vaccinated more than 10,970 individuals in the same period.
“We are excited to reach this milestone so quickly in our vaccination process. Our public health, emergency services and technology teams have worked tirelessly to create a seamless process for vaccinating our residents,” Judge Eads said.
“We also couldn’t have done it without Texas Motor Speedway,” he said. “We couldn’t have done it without our hundreds and hundreds of volunteers that come from all over Denton County and, actually, across the Metroplex.”
When asked what she would do first after being recognized, Mrs. Owens laughed and said, “Call as many friends as I can.”