TV Host Pete Petoniak Still Not Himself After Catching COVID Last Year

Pete Petoniak, a Wisconsin news meteorologist, has said he still does not feel completely back to normal after having been hospitalized with COVID-19 several weeks ago.

The Fox 11 News WLUK station announced that Petoniak was receiving treatment for COVID-19 back in November, explaining why viewers may have noticed his absence in broadcasts around that time.

In a Facebook post on Tuesday, Petoniak said he would be back on air this week and was "so thankful" to be returning. He was fully-vaccinated but had not received a booster shot when he tested positive for COVID-19, the news station said.

Ahead of his return, the meteorologist was asked about his experience with COVID-19 in an interview with co-host Rachel Manek.

"I still feel not myself, and I'm definitely weaker than I was before COVID," said Petoniak, who spent 10 days in hospital before being released on Thanksgiving. He has been resting at home since.

"I was not feeling good," he added, looking back at his time in hospital. "My oxygen level kept going down for a while."

Petoniak was discharged from hospital after his condition began to improve, but said his recovery continued after he got home.

He returned to the news station on Tuesday in order to observe the morning's broadcasts and test his stamina. "I was worried a little bit about endurance and stamina, but it's been good," he told Manek. "Going forward I'm ready to go on the air."

The meteorologist sent his thanks to the medical workers at Bellin Hospital who did a "fantastic job," and acknowledged "all the letters, all the support I got, all the prayers" from well-wishers, which he said "made a big difference."

Many media personalities have tested positive for COVID-19 throughout the pandemic. Jimmy Fallon, host of The Tonight Show, addressed his own COVID-19 case after returning to the show this week.

He said his positive case occurred on the first day of the show's holiday break. In an Instagram post, he wrote: "I was vaccinated and boostered which made me lucky enough to only have mild symptoms. Thank you to the doctors and nurses who work so hard around the clock to get everyone vaxxed."

And this week's remaining episodes of Late Night with Seth Meyers have been cancelled after its host Seth Meyers tested positive for COVID-19. Meyers tweeted on Tuesday that he was feeling fine despite his positive test.

"We are canceling the rest of the shows this week, so tune in next Monday to see what cool location we will try and pass off as a studio," he added.

Doctor with clipboard
A stock photo shows a doctor or nurse holding a clipboard by a patient in a hospital bed. A number of media personalities have had positive COVID tests throughout the pandemic. Martin Barraud/Getty