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Community Heroes: After volunteering in Kirkland ICU, nurse Crystal Archaumbault spent 42 days working on the front lines of COVID-19 in New York

As the world rallies together to stop the spread of COVID-19, Sounders FC is highlighting members of the community who have gone above and beyond to make a positive impact. These folks are fighting on the frontlines, putting in heroic efforts to ensure that we can all come through this crisis stronger together.


Crystal Archambault’s story brings new meaning to fighting on the front lines. 

Archambault, a cardiac recovery nurse, developed her deep-seated commitment to fighting for the collective during her tenure as an elite soccer player and coach. 

After starring for the Interlake High School and Oregon State University soccer teams, she moved back home to Seattle, where she coached at a local club while working for FOX Sports. Although she loved being out on the pitch every day, she felt called to pursue a new career, which led to her earning a nursing degree at Northwest University.

When COVID-19 struck, Archambault began working night shifts in the ICU at Evergreen Hospital in Kirkland. 

“Because she had so much experience, she went over to Evergreen Hospital where the epicenter was,” said Sue Boettcher, a longtime friend and soccer colleague who nominated Crystal for the CHI Franciscan Community Heroes initiative. “She felt like she could step up to the plate and be helpful in that environment.”

 

With the spread of COVID-19 slowing in Washington, a new focal point for the virus emerged in the United States: New York City. As she learned from her days as a soccer star, the game doesn’t end at halftime. Archambault decided to continue fighting side by side with her fellow healthcare professionals across the country.

“The epicenter moved from here to New York,” said Boettcher. “So, she submitted her application, they accepted, and she left for the East Coast on Easter.

“It’s all so challenging. But she’s willing to work in that environment because she knows she can save lives. She’s inspiring.”

When her 21-day stint in New York City concluded, Archambault felt like she had more to contribute to the cause. She applied for another 21-day stay on the front lines, which was accepted on May 5. 

 

“She’d rather go put herself on the line than have someone else do it,” added Boettcher. “Who would do that? Who would step into this environment, battle like that and then want to stay again? She must’ve seen a lot to motivate her to still want to be there and help more people. She’s a fun-loving person, so I can see how she would treat her patients in a positive, upbeat way. That’s one of the things that I love about her. She’s such a great role model.”

The COVID-19 crisis has presented our society with myriad unprecedented problems. Undaunted by the scale of this crisis, Archambault continues to put herself in harm’s way, fighting on the front lines so she can help save lives.

“She’s my hero,” said Boettcher. “I admire her courage and her willingness to put her life at stake. I just want to thank her so much for taking care of people.”

Every single one of us is capable of making a positive impact in these harrowing times. And with people like Crystal Archambault in our community, we’re going to get through this together.

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