‘Really, really relieved’: Gordon School students fully vaccinated through Moderna trial for kids

EAST PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WLNE) – A group of students at The Gordon School are now fully vaccinated after participating in the Moderna vaccine trial for children.

About a dozen students at the school in East Providence signed up for the trial but weren’t told whether or not they got the actual shot or a placebo.

When their parents went to schedule them for the Pfizer vaccine when eligibility expanded to children aged 12 to 15, that’s when Moderna told them they had – or hadn’t – already gotten a dose.

“I also didn’t think that I got it because I didn’t have any symptoms and then my mom had made an appointment for me to get the Pfizer shot and then in the car she was like oh you’re vaccinated! I was just very happy about that,” said Annabel Herzlinger, a 7th grader at Gordon.

Zoey Frank, another 7th grader, also learned that way that she hadn’t gotten the placebo, even though she thought she had.

“My mom had signed me up to get a Pfizer shot on one of the websites because no one in my family thought I had gotten the real one. So my dad found me after and put on a very embarrassing display about how I had gotten the shot and I was just really, really relieved!”

Some say they felt fine after their first and second doses, but others felt the effects.

“My second one was worse. I had a lot of side effects. I had a lot of nausea, I had chills, I had a lot of fatigue, headaches, stomach ache. I was curled up in a ball and it was really bad but my first one I just had a headache,” said Peyton Riegel, a 7th grader at Gordon.


“I just feel really happy that I got to be a part of this and then to see all my other friends go through it and then I can like help them and stuff, it feels good and it’s like a relief that I have it now,” said Janie Palan, also a 7th grader at Gordon.

The students say they feel relief and that the small sacrifice was worth it to be able to get back to being a normal kid in a post-pandemic world.

“When I’m older, like really older and I have kids maybe, then I’ll have something to tell them, and maybe even a while in the future our group will be remembered for this and helping stop the pandemic.”

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Categories: Coronavirus, News, Providence, Regional News, Rhode Island