A few days before Christmas my mother was transferred to the University of Iowa Hospital’s emergency room for what was originally diagnosed as double pneumonia. She arrived around mid-afternoon and there was a nurse on duty, Danielle Black, who was assigned to Mom. She was exceptional in keeping us informed of what was happening, answering our questions, helping to suction out the phlegm that had been accumulating in Mom's throat, and was supposed to be off duty around 7:00 p.m. that night.
Around 8:00 Danielle came by to talk to us--she'd stayed an hour past the end of her shift to help ensure my mom got to where she was supposed to get in the hospital. She told my mom she was off until Christmas, but if Mom was still in the hospital, then she'd come by and visit. That could have just been some comforting words for a nurse to say in passing and forgotten, but when Christmas came, Danielle found my mom in the ICU, came to visit and gave her a small ornament as a Christmas gift.
Our family was so touched by that, and the fact Danielle cared that much for her patients, especially one she'd only known for a couple hours, to devote her own time and expenses to her. My mom passed away at the University of Iowa two days after Christmas.
As my family was writing out thank-you notes after the funeral, Danielle's name came up, and all of us wished there was a way to send her a card to thank her personally. All the nurses at Iowa were very good to Mom, but there was something about Danielle--maybe because she was the first nurse we saw or the extra steps she took--but she made an impact and an improvement in what was a very rough time for our family. Thank you for all you did for my mom during her short stay there.