BOSTON (CBS) – The Super Bowl is an exciting experience, and the Patriots organization is taking 76 vaccinated frontline healthcare workers from New England to Super Bowl LV in Tampa, Florida, where the Tampa Bay Buccaneers will face the Kansas City Chiefs.
One of those healthcare professionals is Michelle Diop, who can barely contain her excitement. The Mass General Hospital resident is among the dozes of healthcare heroes handpicked by the Patriots organization to attend the Super Bowl.READ MORE: Dorchester Church Joins National Father's Day Challenge, Calls For 'Summer Of Peace'
“I legit lost my mind. I was completely speechless,” said Diop. “Of course, I’ll be rooting for the Buccaneers because of Tom [Brady] and [Rob Gronkowski].”
It’s a big thank you from the Kraft family after an incredibly tough year fighting COVID-19 up close. Emergency room nurse Jairah Zinni says being chosen by her favorite team makes the experience even more special.
“Even if it’s just a quick 24 hours, it’s definitely some time to relax, to see each other in a more relaxing environment where we’re not chasing monitors and alarms and stuff,” said Zinni.
And if that wasn’t exciting enough, the Patriots will be flying their vaccinated Healthcare Heroes To Tampa Sunday on the team plane.READ MORE: Massachusetts Reports 41 New COVID Cases, 5 Additional Deaths
“I’ve seen, obviously, the pictures of the plane, especially when they picked up all the masks from China,” said Diop. “And now, I’m going to be able to say I was on the Patriots private plane.”
The heroes will be taking part in pregame parties and concerts, meeting other hospital workers chosen by NFL teams across the country to experience the big day.
“It’s something that I wish I could share with everyone because the reality is fighting COVID-19 has been a huge team effort,” said Diop.
Their hard work finally rewarded. Zinni says she still can’t wrap her mind around it.
“It means so much to have their thoughts and their support from them,” she said.MORE NEWS: 'Devastating': 1-Year-Old Angelo Nicoloro Drowned During Wrentham Father's Day Celebration
WBZ-TV’s Dr. Mallika Marshall, who also received both doses of the coronavirus vaccine, will travel with the healthcare workers to the Super Bowl on Sunday. She will begin reporting live at 8:30 a.m., when the plane leaves Logan Airport.