TUCSON (KVOA) - Over the last year we've watched so many of our neighbors and loves ones step up and put their own lives on the line in the fight against COVID-19 to keep us safe.
All this month, News 4 Tucson is paying tribute to our local heroes on the front lines of this health crisis.
News 4 Tucson's Sean Mooney introduces us to four heroes fighting every day to save lives in the medical ICU at Banner UMC.
Christian Bime, Sammie Lowe, MacKenna DeLapp and Bhupinder Natt, you may not know their names but if you contracted the coronavirus and needed intensive care you would want them by your side.
Four heroes among many in the medical ICU at Banner UMC.
Together they have seen countless lives taken by COVID-19, but they have also saved many others. And despite the psychological and physical toll it has taken on all of them, they say what they do is their calling.
"We've lived all our lives for this moment for all of us to setup in and make a difference, so as challenging as it is we also see it as an opportunity to serve," Dr Christiam Bime said.
Endless shifts, exhausting work, having to watch those suffering, saving those they can and being there for those they can't.
"I will admit I do have those days, it does feel overwhelming, it bogs you down and it's tough to see people so sick and to see people die every day that you are in here," Sammie Lowe said.
"It's a job we don't take lightly and it calls for a unique person to be able to get up day after day and witness death and provide comfort for those who are dying," MacKenna DeLapp said.
Alone they might not make it, together is how they make it through.
"I would be lying if I said this was easy….and therefore having a peer group, having a team effort helps you. You are able to bounce off of each others energies, support each other and that's what keeps us going every day," Dr. Bhupinder Natt said.
Never realizing what they are doing every day is heroic.
"I don't view myself as a hero, no," Lowe said.
"We are just doing what we have always wanted to do, we don't fancy ourselves as heroes in any particular way," Dr. Bime said.
"I wouldn't say heroes, all of us signed up to do this, we knew this was something we might have to face one day and everybody is stepping up," Dr. Natt said.
"I don't necessarily look at myself as a hero, I think that again, this is a calling, someone has to do it and it is an honor to do it for the public," DeLapp said.
After peaking on Jan. 11 with 1,183 ICU beds occupied by COVID-19 patients. That number has now dropped to below 800.
A trend the heroes of Banner UMC's medical ICU say should continue if people keep following precautions to stop the spread of the virus.