Registered Nurses (RNs)
National Winner - Gaynell Stone, RN, OCN
(Rex Hospital – Raleigh, NC )
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North Carolina Hospital Assoc. Sept. 2004
" Gaynell knew just how to comfort and make each moment count."
Nominated by: Darlene Wilkins

In January of 2003, my 21-year-old daughter was stricken with fevers, hemolytic anemia, and other weird symptoms, which turned out to be a t-cell lymphoma. It was during her seven-month illness that I came to know and love Gaynell.

Gaynell was Lucy's nurse for most of her hospitalization, but she came to be her friend, confidante and protector. Gaynell would go home and email Lucy with pictures of her animals and the places she would go and things she would see. She always came to check on Lucy as soon as she came on duty. She made sure that she was assigned to Lucy and looked out for her with other assignments.

Gaynell also cared for me, my husband and our other three children. She quickly became a part of our family. When Lucy knew that Gaynell was coming on duty, she always sent us out for dinner, which included bringing an extra meal back for Gaynell. Caring for dying patients day in and day out for many years, Gaynell knew just how to comfort and make each moment count. With many patients to care for each night, she still knew how to make Lucy feel that she was her only patient. When Lucy was transferred to the ICU for her last month of life, it was Gaynell who came to her room to see her every day. It was Gaynell that Lucy called for in the middle of the night, when her time on earth was nearing its end. It was Gaynell that Lucy requested to sit with the family at her funeral. It was to Gaynell that the butterfly came to at the moment of Lucy's passing.

Having been an RN myself for over 30 years, I can honestly say that I have seen few other nurses who have given of themselves so unselfishly and lovingly, especially to the dying patient. It was an honor for me to have shared my dying daughter’s love with Gaynell, and she deserves every honor a nurse could have bestowed upon her.