Strong Hospital nurse on COVID-19 frontlines living out of camper to protect pregnant wife


ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — JT Rice is going to be a dad.

That’s a thought that keeps him smiling, even in light of what he sees every day.

“It’s kind of crazy that it’s all happening now during all of this, but it’ll make for a great story one day for our kid,” said JT.

JT normally works in Strong Hospital’s PICU, or Pediatric Intensive Care Unit. Now, he’s helping treat COVID-19 patients.

So, to protect his expecting wife, Taylor, from the virus, he is isolating himself in a camper, donated by his parents.

“Missing out on things like her being able to feel the baby move on the outside for the first time. She was able to start feeling that the other day and I can’t be in there to feel that with her,” said JT “It’s emotional for the both of us, but we’re trying to make the best of it.”

Taylor, who is working from home, said the two communicate through FaceTime and texting, but nothing compares to being in the same place for those milestone moments.

“This is something that couples should experience together, and unfortunately we aren’t able to right now, so it’s pretty difficult, but we’re getting through it and hopefully he can come back inside soon,” said Taylor.

JT said he will stay in the camper for an extra 2 weeks to quarantine after his month-long assignment working with COVID-19 patients. But, he said, it is all worth it to help.

“I signed up to be a nurse. I signed up to help people and make a difference,” said JT.

JT and Taylor are expecting their first child this September.

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