Kent State Trumbull Student Blazes a New Trail after COVID-19 Closings

After a COVID-19 related layoff, Kent State Trumbull psychology major Krysta Forrest is using her spare time to put out fires, literally.

The 2018 LaBrae/TCTC graduate has been volunteering for the Braceville Fire Department for two months. She volunteered sporadically while attending classes and working full-time as a cleaning technician. She was also set to begin a fire class to become a firefighter. Then came COVID-19. Forrest was laid off from her job.

"In a matter of a week, you find out that you do not have a job and all of your classes will be remote," she said. "That's stressful. However, it warms my heart knowing that I am helping someone on their worst day."

Now, she spends most of her spare time working with the department to treat injuries, health issues and put out the occasional fire.

According to Forrest, firefighting comes easily to her. Her father, Charles (Chuck) Forrest Jr., is a retired Warren Township firefighter. Her grandfather, Charles Forrest, was Warren Township firefighter, Her grandmother, Katherine (Kathy) Forrest, was the first female firefighter in Warren Township history.

Forrest volunteered with the Warren Township Fire Department from 2015 to 2018.

"She is doing a great job," said Braceville Fire Chief Todd Garland. "She has great energy and we are happy to have her."

After graduation, Forrest wants to become a social worker for a children's services agency. Until then, she will be finishing her classes, helping her community, and waiting for the fire tone to drop.

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POSTED: Wednesday, April 1, 2020 - 7:40pm
UPDATED: Tuesday, May 19, 2020 - 4:40pm