Fans were completely shocked when actress Monica Raymund decided to leave NBC’s hit series Chicago Fire in 2018, at the start of season 7. After all, she had been on the show since its premiere in 2012, playing paramedic Gabby. Dawson, who was married to the equally adored Captain Matt Casey (Jesse Spenser). Those who followed the series season after season wondered at the time if Chicago Fire would be the same without Raymund’s Gabby Dawson.
Chicago Fire: Part of the One Chicago franchise that also includes Chicago Med and Chicago PD, all on the same night, follows the firefighters and paramedics who work in the Chicago Fire Department’s fictional Firehouse 51. Each week, the show travels alongside first responders showing how they risk their lives to save and protect the city’s civilians.
But Chicago Fire isn’t just about heroics, it also delves into the characters’ personal lives and the camaraderie found in a firehouse. During the six seasons that Monica Raymund starred on the series, Dawson and Casey, sometimes referred to collectively as “Dawsey,” were a hot topic, eventually getting married on season 5 of Chicago Fire. But being a paramedic wasn’t enough for the actress, and she left her life in Chicago behind to join relief teams in Puerto Rico after the island was badly hit by the hurricane.
After six seasons on Chicago Fire, which actually shoots in a real firehouse in the Windy City, Monica Raymund’s contract was up, and the actress had to make a life-changing decision. Ultimately, Raymund decided to leave the Chicago Fire, posting on Twitter in May 2018 that it was time to “move on to the next chapter in life.” In a 2018 interview, she discussing her departure and how her desire to take on new projects of hers led her to leave Chicago Fire.
“I knew my six-year contract was coming to an end and I felt like I was hungry to explore a different role, a different story. I wanted to explore a different world,” explained Raymund.
“I had been in Chicago for five years and personally where I was at in my life, I was ready to make my home and plant some roots in Los Angeles. It’s kind of a double-edged sword because on the one hand it’s wonderful to be employed for so long. time and job security, and being able to dig into a story and clear it up over that period of time. Getting that opportunity is extremely rare and special. […] But sometimes you have to take a risk to diversify your opportunities.”
After leaving Chicago Fire, Monica Raymund has starred in the Starz original crime drama Hightown since May 2020. In it, she plays hard-partying federal fishery agent Jackie Quiñones, who becomes obsessed with a case where a dead body washes up on shore in quaint Provincetown, the popular LGBTQ+ vacation spot on Cape Cod, Massachusetts.
Despite leaving the Chicago Fire in 2018, Monica Raymund hasn’t been able to stay completely away from Firehouse 51. After last appearing on the show during the season 7 premiere to end her relationship with Casey, the actress’s Dawson returned in Chicago Fire Season 8 for a one-off appearance in the mid-season finale.
Considering that Dawson was not killed and that there is still a love connection between her and Casey, there is always the possibility that the actress could return to the show. The Chicago Fire showrunners have kept quiet about it, but the door was clearly left wide open.