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Fight with COVID-19 creates uncertain military future for Kansas Army National Guard captain

Published: Nov. 11, 2020 at 10:37 PM CST
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WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) - Angie Mooneyham, a captain in the Kansas Army National Guard, is among millions of servicemen and women across the country receiving recognition for their contributions and sacrifices on Veterans Day. While Mooneyham wants to continue that service, an enemy that arrived in the form of a pandemic has her worried about her future in the military. In July, Mooneyham tested positive for COVID-19.

She said she was initially diagnosed with double pneumonia. COVID-19 piled on.

“I never thought I was going to get this sick, and that’s it with COVID, you just don’t know,” Mooneyham said.

Months later, she still struggles with breathing issues and a cough. The diagnosis came with a big change for the 45-year-old who has served in the National Guard since she was 34 and has had the chance to do “so many cool things,” as part of an overall service experience she describes as “awesome.”

“Even though I’m an older person, I was still very active,” Mooneyham said of her overall health.

In addition to military service, she is a business owner who works around Wichita and takes time to give back through volunteer efforts.

“It went from 100 miles an hour to one big event that could take me out,” Mooneyham said.

She spent eight days at Ascension Via Christi St. Francis hospital recovering from her symptoms following her July diagnosis.

“I still remember every day when I got up that I had it and it’s nerve-wracking too, that I’m worried about my military career,” Mooneyham said. “Is this going to be a show stopper?”

She even had to turn down a deployment overseas.

“I just got out of the hospital and I said, ‘ugh, I’m not going to make the physical.' And they were leaving in four weeks, and I knew there was no way I could pass PT, a physical and a mental test. So I had to turn down a great opportunity."

Her message for others now: “Wash your hands and social distance.”

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