Sarah spent several shifts looking after W after his fall down a flight of stairs before Thanksgiving. We all knew that W was in trouble that first night and for several days to come, but we knew that he was in good hands every time we saw Sarah on the floor. She made an effort to comfort the family during this difficult time answering all of our questions and even some that we did not know how to ask. She took her time, watched W, and tried to make him comfortable even with all of the tubes and monitors around him. Even though W was unable to communicate with her, Sarah made an effort to connect with him. We spent almost a week with W in the Trauma Unit before his body gave up. He ran a hard race but at 93 his injuries were just too great.
It was amazing to see Sarah at work. Every action was deliberate and seemed precise and well planned. After any treatment, adjustment, or movement Sarah waited to make sure that everything was ok and under control. Even though W could not communicate, it seemed that Sarah connected with W. It seemed that she knew when he was uncomfortable, in pain, and when he needed some attention. Along with all of her medical knowledge, she has the gift of compassion, and a very caring heart.
I might be mistaken, but it seemed that Sarah came to the floor even during her off time checking up on her patients. W passed the Wednesday before Thanksgiving early in the morning. The family was in the hallway ending our conversation with the Trauma Doctors and staff. Sarah was not with W that morning, but as we were leaving she saw W's wife and came over and spent several minutes comforting her and the rest of the family. We all shed tears that morning including Sarah. Life is a treasured gift that we all have. Sometimes we fall, sometimes our bodies have other issues. It is nice to know that UVA has a staff made up of individuals like Sarah that treasures this gift of life that has been given to us all. You have the knowledge to help put us back together but you also have the loving passion to help individuals that you have never met before. Sarah, thank you. Our family wishes you the best. Even though our time at UVA ended on a sad note, we know that you and the other members of your team gave it your best, you all shared your passion and your love for humanity.