Local Nurse Dies of COVID at Same Hospital Where He Saved Lives for Over a Decade

Traveling nurses Amanda Picchi and her boyfriend Kyle Murray, just made the final arrangements for Amanda’s father, Tom Picchi, a beloved nurse at Desert Regional Medical Center.

“We watched for months now people losing their family members and it’s so shocking when it happens to yourself and your family, even though we’re nurses and we know what the risks are, it doesn’t make it easier,” says Amanda. 

When your father in law paid the ultimate price trying to help others, it’s devastating,” says Murray.   

Amanda says her father had been fighting COVID since mid December, “Mild symptoms, and then he ended up getting short of breath and needed to call 911.”

He died on January 8, 2020, at the place where he worked for over a decade. Amanda had not seen her father for months, but is grateful she was there on his last day. 

“End of life, and we were there to hold his hand … he was too sick when we last saw him,” she says. 

He was 71-years-old and could have retired, in fact he did take some time off at the beginning of the pandemic.

“And it’s not that the virus got any better or safer it’s that he couldn’t just sit around and while his hospital is getting overrun and not help out,” says Murray. 

“He loved nursing and he enjoyed his job, he enjoyed his coworkers and he wanted to help people,” says Amanda. 

They want him to be remembered for his selfless and caring heart. Even in his spare time, he helped an animal rescue, “Pilots for Paws”, transporting dogs on his airplane.

“A kind gentle man, that is looking out for his community,” says his daughter. 

“We are incredibly proud of him, he is a healthcare hero,” says Murray. 

They know Tom would want to keep helping even in death.

“He’s not coming back, but he was a nurse to save lives, if this can just make one person watching the news think, ‘Maybe I shouldn’t go out tonight or maybe I shouldn’t get together with that group,’ if it can save one life, then there you go tom saved another one,” says Murray,”

His family hopes to fulfill his wishes by burying him next to his parents in Rockford Illinois. His coworkers set up a GoFundMe account to help with these costs. If you want to help click here: HERO TOM PICCHI FUND

Desert Regional Medical Center sent us this statement about Tom Picchi:

“Our hearts are heavy over the loss of Tom Picchi. Tom was a much loved member of our nursing staff, and he will be deeply missed by his colleagues. We send our condolences to Tom’s family and friends as we all mourn his passing. May he rest in peace knowing he made a lasting impact on the lives of those he cared for.”


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