WEST HAVEN, CT (WFSB) - Hundreds of military veterans got their shot in the arm today at a clinic hosted by the VA Hospital in West Haven.
Any vet enrolled in VA healthcare had the opportunity to get their first dose of the vaccine.
Today's clinic helped further the mission of the state's VA healthcare system, to vaccinate every vet asap.
"Let's go over what you're getting. You're getting the Pfizer vaccine," stated one local nurse.
Commander Ray Essig has been waiting for this moment, getting his first dose.
"You're going to get a little pinch," explained one local nurse.
And the timing couldn't have been better.
"Really exciting, because my mom's been waiting to get it. She's in her seventies and she just got it this morning finally," says Commander Essig.
Essig was one of more than 500 military veterans and essential workers to be inoculated at West Haven's VA hospital today.
To attend, you needed to be 50 or order and enrolled in VA Healthcare.
"So, for us, our goal is to get as many vaccinated as possible," Al Montoya, the medical center director for the VA CT healthcare system, said.
Since December 15, the state's VA healthcare system has been hosting vaccination clinics.
"Right now, we're looking at trying to do that for 35,000 veterans in total and we're about forty-two percent of the way toward that goal," continued Montoya.
Essig is hoping all his fellow vets get vaccinated so they can continue to answer their call to serve.
"My reserve unit has been drilling virtual for the past almost year and it's going to be great when everybody can finally get vaccinated so we can get back doing what we need to do," added Commander Essig.
Everyone who got vaccinated today will get their second dose on March 13.
Any veterans who arrived after the supply ran out got scheduled for a clinic coming up this week.