Keep calm and carry on. That saying could describe Sandra Porter's nursing career. She's always calm no matter what is going on.
Her colleagues say she never seems rattled in any situation, an enviable quality for any nurse. Sandra is retiring after 33 years at CCH, but health care has been a part of her life since childhood.
Sandra's mother took care of many relatives and other older people in their home, and Sandra says that caring for others was what she knew growing up. A career in health care was a natural fit for Sandra, especially since jobs in nursing were almost always available.
Sandra worked as a nurse's aide from 1969-1971, when Campbell County Health was located on the site of what is now the Senior Center. She then attended an LPN program in Chattanooga, Tenn., worked as an LPN for several years and then went back to school to become a registered nurse (RN). She came back to Wyoming to raise a family, intending to stay on the family ranch near Newcastle. But the hospital in Newcastle wasn't hiring at that time and, to our good fortune, we were.
Sandra began work as a nurse in 1983 and remembers the fast pace of working at the hospital during the boom years in Gillette. She worked in the Maternal Child Department for a short time, but spent most of her career in the
Medical/Surgical Unit. Her favorite part of nursing has always been Pediatrics, taking care of children admitted to the hospital for various illnesses and injuries.
That experience will serve her well during retirement, where Sandra plans to babysit her five grandchildren. She says that two of them think they're too old for a babysitter, but of course Sandra knows better. She will also help care for her mother-in-law, who still lives on the family ranch in Newcastle. She has told Sandra that she was born there and is going to die there. Scrapbooking and charting her ancestry are hobbies she looks forward to as well.
Sandra admits that she won't miss working on the computer, her least favorite part of nursing. She has seen the profession grow in autonomy, and is pleased to see the amount of decision-making that nurses are doing in their practice, compared to when she started her career.
Thank you for all the years of caring for others, you have made a difference in our community.