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Nebraska nurse returns from 2 months of fighting COVID-19 in New York

Nick Rainforth poses with his co-workers in a New York City hospital.
Nick Rainforth poses with his co-workers in a New York City hospital.(KOLNKGIN)
Published: Jun. 6, 2020 at 5:37 PM CDT
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Nick Rainforth came home from New York City to a downed tree. He spent most of the afternoon chopping it up.

"I'm not used to the humidity. I'm not used to the 90-degree temperatures," Rainforth said.

The Iowa-boy turned Nebraska-man spent the last two months in the ground zero of COVID-19.

"My family was like, 'Uh, do you have to go to New York? Can you somewhere that's maybe just like a little bad? Not the worst?" said Rainforth. "But that's where they needed the most help right then, so."

He said months working with COVID-19 patients was mentally and physically exhausting.

"April was terrible," said Rainforth. "That was the worst part of the initial wave. April was terrible, I don't really remember May."

Rainforth said the people he worked with didn't even know where Nebraska was on the map, but they quickly became his own community.

"You think about those people for those two months I was there" said Rainforth. "They are my community, they are my family. I was living there."

Now Nick has days to quarantine, and process what he saw.

"You can't prepare for that; seeing that amount of death and failure," said Rainforth. "You can't really prepare yourself for that."

For now, Nick Rainforth will be chopping wood, and trying to get back to normal.

"It's not even real still," Rainforth said. "I don't really know what to do to go back to normal. I want to see my son, and that's all I want right now."

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