THOMASVILLE, N.C. -- A Thomasville man knows all too well just how dangerous the flu can be. He lived through it.
"The easiest lesson you can learn in life is to find out the easy way from someone else who had to learn the hard way," said Thomasville City Councilman Scott Styers, a flu survivor.
Styers started feeling a little sick last New Year's Eve. Styers said he was coughing a bit and had a slight fever. "[I] thought I may have a touch of flu but never thought that it would be that kind of flu," said Styers.
A few days later Styers started feeling much worse. He had to be taken to the emergency room in a wheelchair. "At one time they [the doctors] did give me very little chance to live and they told my family that," said Styers.
He was sedated for several weeks, lost 40 pounds and had to stay in the hospital for three months.
"They told me if I had more risk factors -- if I had been a smoker for instance, had high blood pressure, diabetic -- that I would not had lived."
Styers knows all the excuses for not getting a flu shot; that was his mindset last year when he procrastinated. "I saw six or seven people in a line and I thought 'I don't have time today I'll do it later,'" remembers Styers.
Styers is encouraging everyone to take a few minutes to get a flu shot so they don't have to go through what he went through. "A flu shot is so simple to avoid things that you don't ever want to go through in your life," says Styers.
Styers told FOX8 he's had at least 50 people come up to him and tell him he's the reason they got their first flu shot this year.
The Thomasville YMCA is having a flu shot clinic on Tuesday, Oct. 21 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.