LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Marilou Lazo worked in hospitals for most of her life, both inside the states and back home in the Phillipines, where she met Julie Ann Torremoro. “I’ve known Julie Ann since 1986! We used to work together at the prime transplant center in the Philippines called the National Kidney and Transplant Institute. Then, I was surprised to meet her again, here in Las Vegas!”
Marilou and Julie Ann talked frequently, but it wasn't until Marilou's health scare, that she got to experience the level of care that Julie Ann provides for her patients first hand.
“In December I got sick with Covid and she reached out she almost messages me every day. She pepped me up, give me encouraging words, and tells me that she also suffered from Covid", said Lazo.
Julie Ann and her husband got Covid late las year, and as a nurse on the frontline caring for Covid patients, she was at high risk.
“I was so happy I reached 2021, no really I was, we were scared. We survived, but even before that I was doing the food drive, but after that, I got more inspired,“ said Torremoro.
Both Julie Ann and her long-lost friend Marilou, had pre-existing conditions, and were unsure if their immune systems could beat the relentless virus.
"I’m a kidney transplant patient with underlying medical problems,“ said Lazo.
" I had skin cancer. My white blood cell my white blood count is low so of course, I was afraid to take care of Covid patients. But, we have to! We take turns and going down to the floor to take care of them,” said Marilou.
But both women didn't let Covid win the battle. Julie Ann says her quick recovery gave her both insight and inspiration, so she set out to use her experience with Covid to help others, by delivering food and PPE to those who were in need.
"Because I know how it feels, when it was my time, my doctor brought me food to the doorstep,” said Torremoro.
“We Filipinos even if you’re not relative, just friends we support each other. Kind words, loving words, prayers," said Lazo.
Not only does Julie Ann serve as a nurse and outstanding public servant, but she's able to see Covid through an entirely different lens as a journalist for the Phillippine Times.
“Mostly the things I write in the newspaper are obituaries, stories about these leaders who’ve passed away from Covid,” said Torremoro.
Julie Ann says her goal is to help as many people as she can who have been affected by Covid, through her work inside of the hospital and out.
“My dear friend keep going on, you are amazing, and because you are a nurse extraordinaire and you provide the best of tender, loving, care. She goes beyond her, you know, she goes beyond her Call of Duty”, said Lazo.
“I’m just happy that I’m recognized you know because they would ask Julie I don’t know how you do that do you even sleep? Because, I’m not happy if I don’t go out if I don’t go and get something for the neighbor, for the needy," said Torremoro.
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