Accepting Risk: Firefighter’s family on COVID front lines
Celebrating Fatherhood Series
Kirk and Courtney Normand have two bright and energetic children. Their 8-year-old daughter is a whip-smart force to be reckoned with and their 5-year-old son is a “stereotypical boy who loves to break, destroy and pillage.” Staying home during the pandemic response is hard on kids who love to move and socialize.
As a Fire Captain for the City of Arlington Fire Department, he has taken all the precautions he can to protect his family.
“It’s hurting them in quantifiable and non-quantifiable ways,” Kirk said. The unknown that weighs heaviest on his heart, though, is whether or not the deadly virus that has rampaged through the country will take a member of his family because he walked through the door with it. As a Fire Captain for the City of Arlington Fire Department, he has taken all the precautions he can to protect is family.
“We accept a lot of risk in our job and for the most part my family is onboard with everything,” he said. But with the COVID-19 virus, “you roll the dice before you go home.”
The heightened risk weights heavily on Kirk. “Courtney needs my support,” he said. “We were seeing really, really sick people every day,” adding the firefighters would decontaminate after a shift but were “honestly just hoping [for the best]. It was pretty stressful. A lot of firefighters got sick.”
Coming home every day to a healthy family is a blessing Kirk doesn’t take for granted.
As stressful as quarantine is, along with homeschooling and keeping up with two high-energy kids, coming home every day to a healthy family is a blessing Kirk doesn’t take for granted.
By Ellen Hiatt