First responders thank Parkview staff with parade

Local News

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) — Dealing with COVID-19 has taken a mental toll on some of our local healthcare workers, so first responders from around the area came together at Parkview to show them just how appreciated they are.

Since Governor Eric Holcomb issued the Stay at Home order, Washington Township Fire and EMS has not been called out as frequently as they had before. While they are always at the ready to help, EMS Captain Tyler Burns said that it is hospital workers who are really the ones doing the heroic work right now.

“Normally, we’d be bringing the patients to them and we’d pretty much be on the same team,” said Burns. “We are on the same team, but right now morale is down, from what I’ve been told, at just about every hospital so we just wanted to try and kind of boost that up and make people feel a little bit better about what they’re dealing with right now.”

To lift those spirits, Burns got his fellow first responders to circle Parkview Regional Medical Center in their fire vehicles and ambulances to show their healthcare colleagues that their hard work on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic is not going unnoticed. About 15 Fire and EMS agencies from around Allen County, and even one from Payne, Ohio, took part in the parade.

While it was entertaining, Parkview Chief of Police and Corporate Director of Public Safety Tom Rhoades said that the fact that the recognition came from those who are more often appreciated for putting their lives on the line is the most impactful part of the experience.

“When these heroes take time to recognize our coworkers, it’s really a special time and it does lift their morale,” said Rhoades. “You know, they’re in there doing a job every day without knowing exactly if they’re going to contract a disease or take something home and they keep serving our patients and caring for them and it’s really special to see these men and women recognizing the efforts that they’re giving.”

If there is anything Parkview’s staffers walked away with, Burns said he hopes above all they are encouraged them to keep pushing forward.

“Continue doing what you’re doing,” said Burns. “We support you. We’re here for you whenever you need us.”

Burns hopes to do something similar at Lutheran Hospital. He says they are working out details now and will let the other first responders know when it gets sorted out.

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