GATES COUNTY, N.C. (WAVY) – North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper made a pit stop in Gates County Thursday morning. He is encouraging all residents to get their COVID-19 vaccines.

“This is great,” Cooper said to a county official.

While it was not the biggest COVID vaccine clinic Cooper has been to, he said it was just as important.

“We know right now for a fact that 99 plus percent of people that are getting sick, going into the hospital, going into the ICU and dying are unvaccinated,” Cooper added.

Thursday’s clinic was a drive through where residents didn’t even need to get out of their car.

“It can’t be much easier,” Cooper said. “If you do have a way to drive to come in, get your shot while you’re in the car, wait 15 minutes and then go on.”

The lack of fully vaccinated people is a concern in Gates. Northeast North Carolina counties are averaging around 53% of residents who are fully vaccinated. That number is only 33% in Gates County.


“We have a lot of work to do convincing those who are not vaccinated that it’s safe,” said Gates County Board of Commissioners Chairwoman Dr. Althea Riddick. “If you get vaccinated, you are helping the whole community and not just yourself.”

Organizations like Disability Rights North Carolina will even drive to homes to administer the shot.

“We are providing that home bound service for people, and they can call the hotline and we can get them registered with the vaccine in their home,” said Iris Green with Disability Rights North Carolina. 

It’s all part of the plan to get the vaccine to people in every corner of the state.

“We want to let people know that it’s easy, it’s fast, it’s free, it’s safe and it’s time to get it down if you haven’t,” Cooper said.