Reached by phone, the commenter said she stood by her online sentiments. “I do believe in everything I say,” she said. “I can be very passionate, sometimes a little too passionate.” She declined to discuss the matter further, but shortly after the call ended, her Facebook comments disappeared.
Grappling With Grief (and Trolls)
Drew Scott and his wife, Farrah Scott, both 45, chose not to get vaccinated because they felt they were young and healthy enough to survive. The couple, who were high school sweethearts, also had deep suspicions about the virus’s origin and the safety of the vaccines.
“Drew put his faith in the lord, not man, and he questioned not only the virus being released, but the vaccine being created,” said Ms. Scott of her husband, a machine operator in Whitesburg, Ga.
On Facebook, Mr. Scott questioned the vaccines and the outcome of the 2020 election, often enough to draw the attention of a childhood friend, Richard Green, a paleogeneticist at the University of California, Santa Cruz, who is vaccinated and tried to gently dispel the misinformation.
“These are my friends, how can you not engage?” Mr. Green said in a phone interview. In late August, Mr. Scott wrote a post comparing the vaccines to Russian roulette, and the comment section is filled with Mr. Green’s efforts to correct conspiracy theories. Much of that conversation was later posted to a site that mocks those who died and remains there despite Mr. Green’s efforts to have it removed.
“Drew’s so much more than some dude who didn’t trust the vaccine,” he said, recalling a talented guitar player who loved Pearl Jam and was deeply devoted to his family.