MARLTON, New Jersey (WPVI) -- Victory looks a bit different these days for COVID-19 survivor Ted Coppola from Marlton, New Jersey. He's back at work and cherishing every moment with family. He was one of the first severe cases back when the pandemic started.
"I value my family a little more than I use to I guess, if that's possible. My daughter they were saints through all of this," Coppola said.
We captured his victory walk six months ago after a terrifying five-week battle with the coronavirus including being on a ventilator. Since he's had his fair share of road bumps.
"I was hospitalized once after my initial hospitalization pneumonia. Everything is a scare. I had the sniffles a few weeks ago and the doctor said, 'Oh get tested right away,'" Coppola said.
On top of that, like several patients who had COVID-19, Coppola deals with lingering side effects.
"Diminished lung capacity. I have some strange things like my hands blow up like balloons, but overall from what I'm hearing from other people I'm doing great," he said.
Coppola walked out of Kessler Rehabilitation in Marlton in early May. He finds it disheartening hearing about cases now soaring.
He feared he'd be one of the more than 233,000 who lost their life. He's urging people to not let their guards down, social distance and wear your mask.
"I don't agree with anybody who says the mask is restrictive and it's against my rights. You're just trying to protect yourself and other people and from what all the experts say the mask is the most important thing," Coppola said.