Maggie Rawlins is much, much more than a pretty face.
While many are being introduced to the 28-year-old as a Sports Illustrated swimsuit model, patients in New York know her as a lifesaver — the South Carolina native is a registered nurse who worked in a Queens medical facility during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic last spring.
"I was working in LA, and I booked a flight back [to South Carolina] thinking it would be a month or so," she told the New York Post.
Toward the end of March 2020, New York City had been overrun with positive coronavirus cases and hospitalizations and a call went out for nurses. Maggie didn't think twice and headed to the Big Apple to help.
"I had the skill set as a nurse, and it was a responsibility more than anything else . . . You just hit the ground running. There were a lot of obstacles," she said, noting that none of her patients knew that she was also a model. "I don't think anybody would have cared at that point."
As a medical worker, Maggie has worked all over the world, including Uganda and Nicaragua, where she was a triage nurse.
With the exposure that comes with the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, Maggie is hoping to bring attention to full-time nurses who continue to be on the front lines.
"I want to stress that I was only there for three weeks, which is nothing compared to the sacrifices they have made," she said. "COVID hasn't stopped for them."
MJ Day, editor of Sports Illustrated Swimsuit, posed a photo of Maggie to Instagram in early March, writing, "As a former pediatric oncology nurse and a COVID frontline warrior, her dedication, commitment and passion towards helping others are the types of traits we love to celebrate and highlight."
This is what heroes look like.