Anderson Cooper Has Emotional Interview With Nurse Whose Tear-Filled Post on Patients Dying Went Viral: ‘Like Going to War Every Day’


On the day where the coronavirus death toll in the U.S. set a grim new record high, Anderson Cooper offered up a gut-wrenching interview with one of the healthcare workers fighting on the front lines of the pandemic.

To close out his Tuesday night show, the CNN host brought on Nurse D’Neil Schmall, whose tear-filled social media post after a “really rough” day recently went viral. Last month, Schmall relocated to New York City from Washington, D.C.,  to help out at the epicenter of the nation’s outbreak.

Cooper played several clips from Schmall’s emotionally raw video to lead off the segment, which took the nurse by surprise.

“Thanks so much for being with us and for everything that you and so many others are doing to take care of patients,” Cooper said. “What is it like? I know you and your colleagues are experiencing something that people who aren’t working in a hospital setting or don’t have a loved one in a hospital setting can even really understand at a time like this. What are you — what’s it like every day?”

“It’s difficult,” Schmall began to answer before breaking off, seeming on the verge of tears. “I did — I’m sorry. I didn’t know they were going to play that — I didn’t know they were going to play the clip of that video because I’ve never watched it.”

“Oh, I’m sorry,” Cooper said.

“I actually went back the morning after doing that, I immediately — I wake up at 4:45 a.m. — went to erase that but it had been shared so many times,” she decided not to do anything, Schmall explained.

“I never knew it would gain so much attention. So, just listening to that and listening to that voice and just knowing what it was in that moment was…” an emotional Schmall said, her voice cracking. “It’s difficult. It’s difficult working — it’s difficult just being in the health care field in general. It’s like going to war every day, especially with Covid.”

” Yeah, it seems for families, often because of the health considerations, they can’t really be with their loved one,” Cooper noted, adding that he had lost his own mother last year but that being present with her as she passed away was incredibly important in helping him grieve. “That adds a whole other layer to what families are going through and what patients are going through.”

“Absolutely. I can’t imagine being — the day that happened, actually, that’s what kind of happened. I walked into a room. My patient had expired. And I was like, ‘Wow.’ Like, he was by himself. You know?” recalled Schmall, who was clearly still deeply saddened by the memory. “There was no one around. There was no resuscitation order, so there would have been nothing done. But normally if I had a patient that was expiring [alone], I would always sit in their room with them.”

Watch the video above, via CNN.

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