Heather Silchia, a 911 dispatcher who works the midnight shift at the Jefferson County’s 911 call center, was surprised to find a nasty letter under her windshield wiper as she left for work on April 11.
The note began: “PLEASE STAY HOME!”
It read: “I noticed a few days a week you leave home with your baby and return a short time later without it. Then I see the man of the house arrive with the baby later in the afternoon while your vehicle hasn’t moved all day. This leads me to believe that the kid is in daycare. Stop. I am assuming that man has an essential job since he is gone all day but if you are home there is no reason for your child to be in daycare at a time like this. I also see you leave shortly after your husband (I assume) gets home. You aren’t wearing any sort of uniform and I have never seen you wear a mask. Bars are closed and you couldn’t possibly be getting groceries every night (which would also require you to wear a mask) so again I ask you to please stay home.”
The note continued: “Also, do everyone in the neighborhood a favor and keep your older kids inside. They are loud. Help do your part in keeping our town safe and STOP LEAVING YOUR HOME!”
It was signed: “Sincerely, All your neighbors.”
Silchia, a mother to three young children, was dismayed by the nastiness of the letter, but took it in stride.
Having been raised by two first responders, she explained that working the graveyard shift during the pandemic was crazy, especially since people keep calling to notify the police and fire departments about potential coronavirus contamination at various scenes.
With her full-time job, three small children, as well as her and her husband working opposing shifts, it is a miracle she was more compassionate about the letter.
She told KDVR: “If somebody’s having a bad day, and they’re taking it out on you, just be kind, and that’s something I have to do every day in my job. Even though we just answer the phone and we don’t respond to the call ourselves, we are the first to respond to people’s cry for help.”
She explained that in sharing her story, she hoped that other nosy neighbor types would get to understand that not all essential workers wear uniforms.