Backbone of Silicon Valley: Anna Isabel Garcia
Anna Isabel Garcia is a nurse who worked through the COVID-19 pandemic. Photo by Lorraine Gabbert.

Editor’s Note: Backbone of Silicon Valley is a first-of-its-kind video storytelling project. Our reporters spent a year documenting the plight of six essential workers in Silicon Valley—the unsung heroes who clean your house, pack your groceries and prescriptions, cook your food, work in hospitals and deliver your meals. San José Spotlight teamed up with filmmakers to tell their stories. Check our video page for new mini documentaries posting Mondays and Wednesdays in December.

Anna Isabel Garcia worked as a nurse at Santa Clara Valley Medical Center through the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We didn’t know what we were facing,” she said. “The hardest part was watching a lot of patients die.”

Then she got COVID. She felt like she was hit by a bus.

“I was really scared,” she said.

Returning to work after she recovered gave her anxiety. Garcia is the main provider for her family and didn’t want to make them sick. But she remained true to her calling.

“Being a nurse, I am responsible for my patients,” she said, “and I wanted to continue caring for them.”

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