Willie Nelson survived a difficult bout of COVID-19 back in May, he reveals in a lengthy new profile published in the New York Times.
The country legend, who suffers from emphysema, had just turned 89 a week prior when, on May 4, he woke up during a tour stop in Nashville struggling to breathe. He tested positive.
“I had a pretty rough time with it,” Willie now says of the experience. “COVID ain’t nothing to laugh at, that’s for sure.”
According to his wife, Annie, Willie’s bout with the illness was nearly fatal. After his rapid PCR test came back positive, she immediately began administering every remedy she could think of to help him combat the infection.
“I had a nebulizer on the bus,” she recounts. “I started everything I could at that point, including PAXLOVID. He had the monoclonal antibodies. He had steroids.”
They rushed back home, where Annie “turned the house into a hospital,” she goes on to say. Still, for a few days the singer’s illness was very severe. “There were a couple of times when I wasn’t sure he was going to make it,” Annie adds.
Fortunately, Willie started to recover after six days. Two weeks later, he was back to performing.