Oral History Interview
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Christina Martinez is a Navy Reserve nurse from Tampa, Florida who was deployed to New York City during the Covid-19 pandemic in the spring of 2020. She recalls her initial arrival in New York City, where she witnessed the empty streets amidst the city-wide lockdown. Martinez served as a nurse treating patients with Covid-19 at the Jacob J. Javits Convention Center in Manhattan, where the Army Corps of Engineers had set up a field hospital. Despite the hectic nature of her work environment, Martinez talks about being able to provide comfort to her patients and how her bilingual skills enabled her to communicate with Spanish-speaking patients. She recounts her role in reuniting two sisters who were each receiving treatment at the field hospital. Her group of nurses, dubbed EMF-19, acted as a support system for each other in a self-described sisterhood. Additionally, Martinez stresses that Covid-19 is real and that education is an important tool to help combat the spread of the virus, with positive attitudes being something everyone can try to maintain.