Sturdy Memorial Hospital
With no warning, last August my father was diagnosed with stage 4 liver and lung cancer. My entire life stopped for that one moment as I sat next to my father in the doctor’s office as we learned this heart-wrenching news. My father is divorced. Of his 3 children, I became the person to take care of him. I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way. Doctors quickly started radiation treatment in hopes of slowing the caner’s progress. On Oct. 6, he was admitted to the hospital and, sadly, passed away Oct. 10 at the age of 69. It was during those hospital days that God sent us nurse Gina Brule to care for my father. It is important for you to know that Gina works in a different unit in the hospital but was reassigned to my dad’s unit for three days. Gina always updated me on his condition, gave explanations of the medication they would administer, and tending to his every need with such concern and kindheartedness. We even had her in the room with us as we discussed my father’s final days.
I began to wonder how I could ever repay Gina for treating my dad with such compassion. I began to open my ears. For example, she mentioned during conversations she liked ice tea. So every chance I got over those days, I made sure I never returned without an ice tea in my hand for her. When I left the hospital for the final time, I wished I could ask Gina for her address so we could stay in touch, but I needed to respect her privacy. With tears in my eyes, I handed her my business card and hugged her goodbye. I felt such a connection with her. I would have never survived those last days without nurse Gina. God works in many wonderful ways. A few weeks later, I received this beautiful card at work in the mail from Gina. Just another sign of the magnitude of her compassion and kindness.
—Nominated by Lynn Gale