WATE 6 On Your Side Heroes

Tennessee National Guard PA on a mission to serve

WATE 6 On Your Side Heroes

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – On this Memorial Day as we remember the heroes who have served our country, we also want to take a moment to appreciate those serving on the front line of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Among these heroes is a young mother on a mission, serving with the Tennessee National Guard, which is aiding in the state’s fight against the pandemic in a number of ways.

Earlier this month, the Tennessee National Guard administered COVID-19 tests at drive-thru sites under Gov. Bill Lee’s orders.

“We’re running multiple sites across the state testing for COVID — we also have multiple pop-up missions come up where we tested nursing homes employees, nursing home patients, prison employees just anything the governor feels is important — we are stepping up and doing what he’s asked,” Captain Vicki Stiltner with the Tennessee National Guard said.

Capt. Stiltner of Knoxville was part of that mission as a member of the joint task force medical; something she didn’t expect was sitting at a sewing machine making hundreds of masks during deployment in Middle Tennessee.

“It’s not our job in the military for sure, it was a team of nurses and actually a chaplain assistant, some doctors and medics and myself as a PA — we made around 360, 370 fabric masks.”

Making masks was just part of her goal to make a difference in service to our state and our country; sacrificing time with her husband and two young children.

“I would say for most of us in the military we don’t feel that we are heroes in any mean we’re just doing the job that we signed up for so it’s great for our loved ones and friends and family to think of us in that way,” she said.

When Capt. Stiltner is not serving our country, she is serving patients as a physician’s assistant here in Knoxville. Her sister Jackie nominated her for our WATE 6 On Your Side Heroes.

We thank her for all she does.


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