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Taylor Swift thanks Utah nurse on her birthday for fighting COVID-19

Whitney Hilton was part of the two teams of Healthcare workers who went to help fight COVID-19 in New York City. She got a thank you surprise from Taylor Swift as she returned home and celebrated her birthday.

OGDEN, Utah — Taylor Swift expressed her thanks to a Utah fan who’s been fighting COVID-19 on the frontlines as a nurse by sending her a thank you note and some gifts to celebrate her 30th birthday. 

Whitney Hilton said the surprise made her day.


” I need to PUBLICLY THANK TAYLOR SWIFT & @taylornation13 @treepaine for sending me a box full of Merch & a PERSONALIZED LETTER from Taylor herself for my 30th birthday/for going to NYC to help as a nurse. This was quite literally the BEST DAY OF MY LIFE,” Hilton wrote on Twitter over the weekend. 

Hilton is a registered nurse at McKay-Dee Hospital in Ogden and was part of one of the two healthcare worker teams who joined the efforts in New York City.

“I wanted to send you some presents and to let you know I am so grateful for you. I can’t thank you enough for risking your life to help people and for spreading the message loudly that people need to hear about taking this seriously,” Swift wrote in the handwritten letter.

“Also, I saw the photo of you from my show! Thank you for coming! I would love to give you a hug next time and thank you in person. With love and admiration, Taylor.”

Hilton’s experience in New York

Hilton was assigned to help at Long Island Jewish Memorial, where she said the experience was hard.

“This is a humbling experience,” she shared in a blog post for Intermountain. “I have so much to say but almost too overwhelmed to say it all. New York has been hit HARD.”

Despite the “incredible experience,” Hilton said it’s equally challenging and rewarding. 

“The people need help, the nurses need help, the doctors need help, everyone needs help,” she said. “This is crisis mode like I’ve never seen. This is an incredible experience, albeit the hardest thing I’ve ever done AND equally the most rewarding.”

She shared what it was like to be there with the nursing teams as they tried to connect patients with their families during their final moments because they can’t be together when they pass.

“We had a patient code and die today,” Hilton wrote. “It was incredibly sad to witness, and I pray for the patient’s family that couldn’t be there. I hope they know that we held the patient’s hand as he passed. The teamwork involved was so powerful! Nurses and doctors coming together & risking their health to save someone was amazing to be a part of.”

Because families can’t be in the room when their loved ones die, Hilton said nurses are stepping up to ease the pain. 

“Because these patients’ families aren’t with them when they pass away, the nurses are hand making the families a little card with a fingerprint of the patient and an EKG strip (heart rhythm),” she said. “One thing I want to SCREAM from the rooftops is that if you could see what we see here, you’d do ANYTHING humanly possible to prevent it.”

How To Prevent the Spread of COVID-19Coronavirus

COVID-19 coronaviruses transmitted from person to person. It is a virus that is similar to the common cold and the flu. So, to prevent it from spreading:

  • Wash hands frequently and thoroughly, with soap and water, for at least 20 seconds.
  • Don’t touch your face.
  • Keep children and those with compromised immune systems away from someone who is coughing or sneezing (in this instance, at least six feet)
  • If there is an outbreak near you, practice social distancing (stay at home, instead of going to the movies, sports events, or other activities.)
  • Get a flu shot.

Local resources

KSL Coronavirus Q&A

Utah’s Coronavirus Information

UtahState Board of Education

Utah Hospital Association

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Utah Coronavirus Information Line – 1-800-456-7707

National Resources

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Commonly asked questions, World Health Organization

Cases in the United States