The specialty of emergency medicine is the safety net for our nation’s health care system. What—or more important, who—fortifies that safety net? Emergency medicine is filled with gratification but includes just as many challenges. Those in our lives serve as the pillars of support for us as emergency physicians, the unseen foundation that allows for our return to the trenches day in and day out. This column will highlight the pillars of support in many emergency physicians’ lives. Thank you to those who support us.
Explore This IssueACEP Now: Vol 37 – No 03 – March 2018
To start the series, ACEP Now Medical Editor in Chief Kevin Klauer, DO, EJD, FACEP, recently sat down with Matty Parker, husband of immediate ACEP Past President Rebecca Parker, MD, FACEP, to discuss his experience being married to an ACEP president and the challenges and rewards of supporting an emergency physician.
KK: Tell us about you, Matty.
MP: The first job I ever held was as a professional baker. I did that because my father very graciously trained me through his bakery, which he owned for about 40 years. I was a dishwasher, floor washer, and cake decorator. I found the love of music and learned to play trombone along the way. I taught music during the summers, helping to pay for college, and graduated from the University of Texas at El Paso with a degree in English and American literature. I was a middle school teacher. For 20 years, I taught instrumental music during the summers, and that’s how I met Becky. She was teaching trumpets, and I was teaching trombones and baritones with a group out of Casper, Wyoming, the Troopers Drum and Bugle Corps.
KK: It has been wonderful to meet you through Becky, and your level of commitment has been pretty substantial. When did all that begin?
MP: I think it began when Becky became a part of her first democratic group in Illinois, and we had to sign to put our house on the line for the group. I thought I better find out what the specialty is and what it does because now I’m on the line for it. It was well worth it. I learned a lot about her business. She showed such a passion for it, just as she helped me with my passions over the years, and I can’t thank her enough for that. I went to my first ACEP conference 20 years ago.