The Nursing Honor Guard at Ohio’s Hospice recently recognized Marilyn Stephens, a patient of Hospice of Central Ohio, who served as a registered nurse for 33 years with Bethesda Hospital after graduating from Bethesda School of Nursing in 1957.
Marilyn’s family shared stories of her dedication to nursing and caring for patients. During the blizzard of 1978, Marilyn stayed at the hospital and worked the entire weekend to ensure that her patients received the care they deserved. On another occasion, Marilyn returned to the hospital after her shift to assist in getting patients to safety after a bomb scare was reported.
“The timing of the ceremony was beautiful. She was alert and oriented that day and loved to reminisce on her experiences caring for patients and teaching other nurses,” said Cindy Clark, Marilyn’s daughter. “We still hear from nurses how much they learned from her and how they wouldn’t be where they are without her.”
Marilyn was not only a dedicated, compassionate nurse for her patients, but showed empathy to families and hospital staff as well.
The Nursing Honor Guard at Ohio’s Hospice recognizes patients who have dedicated their lives to the nursing profession. The Nursing Honor Guard provides Ohio’s Hospice the opportunity to show appreciation to fellow nurses who dedicated their lives to caring for the sick during vulnerable times in their lives.
“We are privileged to pay tribute to our former nurses who, through their selfless giving and compassion, have helped to make nursing what it is today,” said Kimberly Chupka, team leader of crisis care at Hospice of Central Ohio. “The Nursing Honor Guard is proud to acknowledge these former nurses and express our gratitude for their years of service.”
During the Nursing Honor Guard ceremony, active and retired nurses from Ohio’s Hospice dress in the traditional blue nursing cape, white uniforms and caps, and highlight the nurse’s career and defining moments. The ceremony includes the recitation of the Florence Nightingale pledge and a final call to duty in which the honoree’s name is called out three times to release them from service.
Honorees are presented with a Florence Nightingale lamp, pin, lantern with candle and a white flower. The lantern is a symbol of comfort, courage and lights the ways to modern, professional nursing. The flower symbolizes devotion to the profession.