1600 S. BRENTWOOD BLVD., SUITE 220 • ST. LOUIS, MO 63144 // FINNEYINJURYLAW.COM // 314-293-4222 // MAY 2020
LET ME TELL YOU ABOUT MY BROTHER FAMILY ON THE FRONT LINE
During all this, he took up marathons. Yes, this kid who was formerly a little hefty and slow of foot began running marathons and running them fast. It is incredible. He never gave up. At this very moment, he is wearing an N95 mask in the ED. He will have it on all day. When he gets off work, he will put his clothes in a plastic bag so they don't infect anyone. He will clean off any virus he may have. His hands are red, dry, and cracked from the washing. He will head home and get ready for the next day. He will not call in sick. He won't avoid his responsibility. He won't turn people away. He will work harder than anyone to make sure all who need care get it. He is young, healthy, and strong. I can tell you this: With people like him on the front lines, we will be safe. He will risk himself to do what he needs to do. He has been training for this time for 35 years. He will never give up and will never quit. He does not know how to quit. He is exactly the type of person we need right now at the ER. He is a beast.
R ight now, I am sitting in my office, setting plans with employees to operate remotely. We are meeting in 10 minutes. We will be fine, maybe even more productive. But my brother is not doing the same. He is working in the Barnes ED as I write this. He is an emergency room physician. He has a pregnant wife and a 2-year-old at home. Some of you may not think your actions will impact them, but they can and will. Please think of others. Let me tell you about my brother. He is 16 months younger than me. He is exactly who we want on the front lines of this situation. Why? Let me fill you in on the type of person he is. He is the middle child of seven, the fourth and final boy ahead of three girls. He struggled in grade school, though my mom hates to admit it. He went to tutors every week. Occasionally, he got lost in the shuffle and would oversleep. He would be tardy at school, and his grades were not that great. But he never gave up. He had the unfortunate timing of being behind me and my friends. We excelled at sports and academics with ease. He did not but never gave up. He knows no other way. In grade school, I would be surprised if his basketball team won 10 games in five years. They were always in the C league. Ours won 40 or so a year in the A league. It was easy for us, but he still showed up and worked. He was admitted to one of the most academically challenging high schools in STL with the hope he could make
it. He showed up. He worked hard. He achieved a 4.0 GPA. He never gave up. He was not the best athlete. He worked to transform himself to become a starting middle linebacker in high school on one of the best teams in the highest class in the state of MO. I would find him working out at 10 p.m. on Friday nights, running sprints in 100-degree heat, and following an absurdly strict diet. All to improve. He never gave up. He worked his way into one of the most prestigious colleges in America. He worked his way onto the football team and made the travel squad (this is a big deal). He never gave up. It was sheer effort and determination. All the while, he worked a campus job delivering newspapers. He would cut grass in the summer, rake leaves in the fall, and do cleanups in the spring. He never gave up. He even scraped enough together to buy a red Ford F-150 for a thousand bucks. He graduated from college and became a paramedic. He quickly realized he could do medicine as well as some of the ER docs he would see. So, he took out massive loans and went back to school and got his master’s in public health. He worked in an oncology clinic, and he studied for the MCAT. He never gave up. He scored well enough to get into medical school at Rush. He took on more loans and worked all through medical school and became an intern, then a resident, and now a fellow in the ED at one of the most prestigious hospitals in America. He never gave up.
Thank God he is there.
So, what can we all do to help him and all those others like him? Let's just relax for a few weeks. Sit on your couch or do some pushups. Work remotely. Order carryout. Let him work safely. Let him help those who need it. Let him do what he has trained to do. Be altruistic. Sacrifice. Practice the physical distancing. Some people have family working on the front lines, like my
sister-in-law and my niece. Remember, we are in this together — some are in it way more than others.
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