“For a while there, that was my crutch. I just, I kept going back to the bar and I was reliving that call — at night, during the day – just trying to figure out what happened. What could I have done? What should we have done? Could we have done anything better for the people that were there when we were triaging them? When we were treating them? If other units had gotten there quicker? If we had gotten there quicker?" – Paramedic Kevin
It was Christmastime 2001 in Manhattan, which only added to the chaos of the scene. When Kevin and his partner arrived in Herald Square, people and bodies were everywhere. It was hard to tell where the back of city bus ended and the front of the white van began, the vehicles seemingly conjoined after the accident that took the lives of six and injured countless more. Kevin grabbed triage tags to make sense of the scene, assigning colors to victims based on the severity of their injury, attempting to do the most he could for the most amount of people while waiting for other units to arrive.
Join former firefighter/paramedic and host Phil Klein as he shares the mic with Kevin who has worked as an EMT, paramedic, deputy volunteer chief, and instructor during his 30 years in EMS. With 9/11 having happened just a few months prior, Kevin recounts how the guilt of taking that day off, coupled with the horrifying accident in Herald Square, led him to relive the scene over and over and question whether he could’ve done anything differently that day. It was this sea of questions that led him to drown his anxiety at the bottom of a bottle in search of answers – a habit that nearly ruined his relationships with friends and family and his career.
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