MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Sydney Monroe, 23, and her friends postponed their vacation during the stay-at-home order in Minnesota. They went to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, earlier this month.

“I started seeing more and more people going to states that were open, which definitely eased my mind like if these people are doing it, then I can do it too,” Monroe said.

Monroe usually wears a mask when out and about. She was less concerned about letting her guard down in a state where, she says, few people took precautions.

“It seemed like the most we’d heard about it was older people were getting it and people with underlying health conditions were getting the most sick,” she said.

Monroe has mild asthma, but says it’s under control. Four days after she got back to Minneapolis, she woke up very sick.

“It felt like someone had literally dumped water on me,” she said. “I was drenched sweating.”

She tested positive for COVID-19. A fever, chills, nausea, and a cough still lingering eight days later.

New numbers released Wednesday show people between the ages of 20 and 39 make up close to 40% of all COVID-19 cases in Minnesota.

Minnesota Department of Health officials said Wednesday there are roughly 100 new cases of COVID-19 of people in their 20s after a weekend of bar hopping on June 12 and 13.

“When they’re in an environment where social distancing is not happening they’re at just as high risk of transmission and acquiring COVID and then they have the potential to spread this,” Minnesota Department of Health infectious disease expert Kris Ehresmann said.

Monroe hopes young people learn from her experience.

“I think young people need to pay more attention,” she said.

The CDC says people under the age of 25 report the lowest rates of wearing masks in public and staying six feet apart from others in groups.

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Kate Raddatz

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