NYC nurse who got 1st COVID shot in US to receive Presidential Medal of Freedom from Biden

Sandra Lindsay, left, a nurse at Long Island Jewish Medical Center, is inoculated with the COVID-19 vaccine by Dr. Michelle Chester, on Dec. 14, 2020, in Queens
Sandra Lindsay, left, a nurse at Long Island Jewish Medical Center, is inoculated with the COVID-19 vaccine by Dr. Michelle Chester, on Dec. 14, 2020, in Queens. Photo credit Mark Lennihan - Pool/Getty Images

NEW YORK (1010 WINS) -- Sandra Lindsay, the Queens nurse who rolled up her sleeve on live TV in December 2020 to get the first COVID-19 vaccine dose in the U.S., will receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the White House announced Friday.

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Lindsay joins 16 other people, including actor Denzel Washington, gymnast Simone Biles and the late Sen. John McCain, in receiving the nation’s highest civilian honor.

President Joe Biden will present the medals at the White House next week.

Lindsay, a director of patient care services at Northwell Health’s Long Island Jewish Medical Center, told 1010 WINS' Newsline with Brigitte Quinn, “I’m just so honored to be receiving this prestigious civilian honor.”

“It is significant not only for me and my loved ones, but also for the people I represent. My Northwell Health family, nurses, healthcare workers, women, women of color, minorities, Jamaicans and immigrants are just a few that come to mind,” she said.

Asked who of her fellow recipients she’s most excited to meet, Lindsay said it will be an honor to meet "all of them," but she did have one name in mind.

“All of them have done so much to contribute to the progress of our nation, and I’m just truly honored and humbled to be in their presence—but I have to say Denzel Washington,” she said. “He seems so far away, and to even think that I’d be in the same room as him, it’s just mind-blowing.”

The honorees who'll receive medals from Biden “have overcome significant obstacles to achieve impressive accomplishments in the arts and sciences, dedicated their lives to advocating for the most vulnerable among us, and acted with bravery to drive change in their communities, and across the world, while blazing trails for generations to come," the White House said.

The honor is reserved for people who have made exemplary contributions to the prosperity, values or security of the U.S., world peace or other significant societal public or private endeavors, according to the White House.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.