Who We Are

Ode to the Valley Home Care Nurses

Grace McConville wishes she were a poet so she could eloquently express the way she really feels about the care and compassion she has received from the Valley Home Care nursing staff. 

Grace, an 85-year old resident of Hawthorne, has been visited for years by the Valley Home Care staff, and remembers them each by name.  “The first one to come visit me – Venetia Fraser, her name was– she was so sweet, so kind.  She could not do enough to help me.”

When Grace was trying to articulate how wonderful these nurses were, she gaspedGrace McConville and Kathleen Kenny and said “I just wish I could put it into words how I feel. Every nurse that came to see me, they all seem to have a special thing about themselves- the kindness gene.  Like, when they were little, they always wanted to be a nurse, and now here they are, and they are so happy, happy in their work.”

Grace has Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) and the team of nurses within Valley Home Care, including Ginny Alfonso, Anne David, Venetia Fraser, Kathleen Kenny, Virginia (Ginny) Riggs, and Nora Sandler, has been managing her home health program.  On these visits, the nurses address breathing issues Grace may be experiencing, make sure she is adhering to the treatment regimen, teach proper use of oxygen, and ensure prompt intervention if she becomes sick.

“The latest one is Kathy [Kathleen Kenny].” Grace continues, “I love her.  When she walks in the door I am so happy. I can feel how much she cares when I talk to her.  Kathy helps me breathe better.  She is so sweet.”

As a loyal supporter of Valley, Grace has designated her donations towards the dedicated nursing staff, each time accompanied by heartfelt notes of thanks.  Grace extends kudos to the person who selects these nurses, because, she explains, “they are so perfect for this role.” 

It is true that nursing is not just a career – it’s more of a calling.  It takes a very strong, intelligent, and compassionate person to take on the role of caring for another human being.  At Valley, the nursing staff is responsible for maintaining professional clinical excellence and delivering compassionate, respectful patient- and family-centered care.

The late Maya Angelou, author, poet and civil rights activist, seemed to share Grace’s feelings for this profession when she wrote “As a nurse, we have the opportunity to heal the heart, mind, soul and body of our patients, their families and ourselves. They may not remember your name but they will never forget the way you made them feel."

Grace, however, does recall the names, and is thankful for each and every one of them.