To honour the “Healthcare Hero of the Week” in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, late-night host Jimmy Kimmel invited New York City nurse T.J. Riley onto Monday night’s episode of Jimmy Kimmel Live! where he commended him for his continuous efforts fighting the novel coronavirus from the front-line.
Not only that, but unbeknownst to Riley — an avid music lover, who works at the Jacobi Medical Center in the Bronx — the 52-year-old TV host had something else in store to help show his appreciation. Dave Grohl.
That’s right, after learning the dedicated health-care worker is a diehard Foo Fighters fan, Kimmel invited the legendary frontman and former Nirvana drummer to join their video call and surprise Riley with a private performance.
“I know you’re a music fan,” said Kimmel. “I’d like to introduce you to somebody, T.J. His name is Dave. Dave, say hello.”
Before the 51-year-old rock star could even wave hello and open his mouth, Riley’s eyes widened with shock.
“Holy s–t. Dave. Dave! I am a huge fan,” he said.
Riley’s star-struck reaction left Grohl in a bout of laughter.
“How are you?” he asked repeatedly with a grin as Riley continued to freak out and babble out of excitement.
“I feel like I’m having a coronavirus dream,” said Riley, who recently recovered from the life-threatening virus himself.
“That’s the effect I have on most people,” joked Grohl, before pulling out a guitar and serenading the nurse with an acoustic rendition of the 1997 Foo Fighters hit Everlong.
“I just happen to have a guitar in my lap,” he joked. “Maybe I’ll play a little song.”
Following his performance, Grohl praised Riley for all of his work at the Jacobi Medical Center.
The Pretender hit-maker said: “T.J., thank you so much for everything you’ve done, for so many people. It’s much appreciated.”
“Jimmy,” he added, “thanks for honouring such brilliant people. You’re doing the right thing.”
“And thank you for fighting Foo all the time, Dave Grohl,” quipped Kimmel in response.
Additionally, Grohl and Kimmel gifted Riley with US$10,000 credit to Life is Good Apparel and even sent some packages to all of the nurses in his department.
Before he was surprised by Grohl, Riley revealed that more than 60 per cent of co-workers had contracted COVID-19 while fighting it at work. He also said he was one of the first to get it.
When asked about his symptoms, the nurse said he had a fever for a total of 12 days, before his husband and parents also contracted the virus.
Riley later assured Kimmel that everyone had recovered and have remained in good health since.
Questions about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:
Health officials caution against all international travel. Returning travellers are legally obligated to self-isolate for 14 days, beginning March 26, in case they develop symptoms and to prevent spreading the virus to others. Some provinces and territories have also implemented additional recommendations or enforcement measures to ensure those returning to the area self-isolate.
Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing — very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.
To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. They also recommend minimizing contact with others, staying home as much as possible and maintaining a distance of two metres from other people if you go out.
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