Carolyn, Mandy, Andrew, and Bobbi-Jo are all medical professionals working tirelessly on the front lines during the ongoing pandemic. But what keeps them going, is the knowledge they are all one unit.
Doctor Andrew Black's daughter, Bobb-Jo Brink, hit the ground running. At just 19 years old she’s one of the ICU patient care techs at Samaritan Hospital.
“I wasn’t expecting a huge virus to hit and everything to go crazy,” said Brink.
The aspiring RN works overtime while attending school and managing to teach her father a few things along the way.
“She had to show me things like where the PPE was and how to put it on,” said Andrew.
The hospitalist physician volunteered to work in the COVID-19 unit at Samaritan and now he and his daughter work side-by-side.
“I'm really just so proud of all my kids but especially these two girls; they’ve stepped up to the challenge,” said Andrew. “I know what I'm going to do that day is going to directly help somebody.”
His other daughter, Carolyn Fleming, knows the feeling too as a Mohawk Ambulance EMT for the Schenectady and Albany areas. She says she draws a lot of courage from her family because every day is scary.
“The anxiety of, you know, getting sick or getting my baby sick or getting any one of my family sick or knowing ... I might be responsible for another person, becoming very ill is very hard to deal with,” said Fleming.
She says her mother, Mandy Black, is not only the beacon of light for the entire family, but plays an integral part in the community as the nurse practitioner at an endocrinology clinic in East Green Bush.
“A lot of it was really talking about this virus and, you know, what do they do if someone in their house is exposed to it, what do they do for themselves," explained Mandy.
They say there are good days and bad days but as long as they have each other, they will continue to see the community through to better days.
“This is a strong community in the capital district. This is a community that believes in each other. If you have the skills to help somebody get better, there's no better feeling in the world,” said Andrew.