Working on Thanksgiving

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"We've been fairly busy today. I haven't really had a moment to sit down and relax," says Dr. Brian Jokhy, an emergency room physician at Rockford Memorial Hospital.

For Dr. Jokhy, a Peoria native, being away from his family during the holidays isn't easy.

"Its kind of hard when you wake up in the morning, put on scrubs and go into work instead," he says.

While many Stateline-area residents were at home enjoying a full plate of food this Thanksgiving, Jokhy and his fellow emergency room physicians were here at Rockford Memorial Hospital ready to make sure that food did not kill them.

"When people try to take too big of a bite of a meal and they swallow it and it gets stuck. We see that a lot on the holidays," Jokhy says.

Those patients aren't always so keen on the idea of spending their Thanksgiving in the emergency room.

"When you have someone come in that needs to stay in the hospital, its a lot more difficult to convince people to stay here for their treatment, especially on a holiday," Dr. Jokhy says.

But while patients may not want to be at Rockford Memorial Hospital this holiday season, the staff does its best to make them feel at home.

"We try to have some decorations around, we bring them food, that kind of thing," Dr. Jokhy says.

And while he may miss out on his family's traditional Thanksgiving celebration, Jokhy and his family have adapted to his busy life.

"Tomorrow I'm actually going to be with all my family down in Peoria so you just make adjustments to the holidays, a day earlier, day later," Jokhy says.

Hospital workers weren't the only ones on the job. Local police and firefighters are busy keeping us safe tonight, restaurant chefs were preparing holiday feasts, and toll booth operators were out making sure the holiday traffic flowed smoothly.