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Daryl Keech Provides 'Intensive Care'

Daryl Keech

A self-described "adrenaline junkie," Daryl Keech, RN thrives in the fast-paced environment of the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at Fremont Medical Center, where he has worked for nearly 25 years, caring for critically ill patients recovering from surgery, respiratory failure or cardiovascular disease.

"More than any other area of the hospital, the ICU allows me to work closely with the physicians in determining the best treatment for our patients," he explains. "Because of our common experience, the physicians have learned to trust me, and I enjoy being able to help not only our patients, but their families, as well."

Born at Rideout Memorial Hospital in Marysville and a lifelong resident of the area, Daryl often knows his patients or their families. "Since I have worked here for so many years, I've taken care of multiple generations of families," he says. "It's not uncommon for a patient to say, 'Oh! You've taken care of my parents!' That personal connection is important to me."

Daryl's decision to become a registered nurse was something of a mid-life career change. He worked in sales for several years, but in his mid-30s he went back to school to study nursing. "While in nursing school, I learned to embrace my poverty since I was no longer working in sales," he chuckles. "I never regretted the move, though, because I believe nursing is a noble profession."

When he's not working, Daryl spends much of his time raising his large, "blended" family. He and his wife, who have been married for six years, have six children between them, ranging in age from 12 to 21. "I try to keep up with their activities and accomplishments," he notes. "Plus, the 'Bank of Dad' is always open."

Daryl also enjoys gardening, tending to the landscaping on his one-acre property in the foothills. "Gardening," he says, "reflects the seasons and natural order of life, much like my job."

For the next season in his own life - eventual retirement - Daryl dreams of moving to the mountains along the southern border of Colorado, near his wife's home state of New Mexico. For now, though, he is simply pleased to be named a Fremont-Rideout STAR Performer, joking, "And it only took me 25 years to do it!"