Staff members at Humboldt General Hospital said good-bye for now to a longtime
nurse who has made a big difference.
Pam Ruark retired August 30, after 28 years of dedicated service. In all,
Ruark’s nursing career spanned 48 years.
According to Harmony Manor Skilled Nursing Facility Director Robin Gillis,
Ruark has been a mentor, an instructor, a loving caregiver and a friend.
“I’m going to really miss you,” Gillis told Ruark during
a surprise going-away party August 25. “I have learned so much from
you as you have quietly guided me.”
Ruark conceded that 28 years is a “long time” to work in one
location, “but I have made great friends here,” she said.
“I have enjoyed myself so much here.”
Ruark was named Humboldt General Hospital’s “Nightingale Nurse
of the Year” for 2012. At that time, nominators likened Ruark to
Nightingale for her professional and caring manner with residents at Harmony Manor.
“She is very knowledgeable, attentive, and supportive with the residents
and their families,” wrote one person. Other nominators addressed
Ruark’s leadership qualities, telling how she not only oriented
new employees but served as a role model.
Others mentioned Ruark’s sense of humor, which could soften any situation
and help others feel at ease.
During her going-away party, Ruark was treated to flowers, chocolates,
and a plaque commemorating her service. HGH CEO/Administrator Jim Parrish
also presented Ruark with a check for $2,800: $100 for every year of service
she has given to HGH.
“Congratulations,” Parrish told a smiling Ruark. “You
have done a great job for us and we will miss you.”
Staff members also showered Ruark with gifts, including a jar of marbles
from co-worker Diane Nevis who joked, "We thought we'd give you
back the marbles that you lost!"
Ruark said she chose nursing because “it was a profession that meant
something.” Plus, she noted that “working with people, especially
the elderly” is what kept her coming back every day.
Ruark said, “I can truly say after all these years that I have enjoyed
She added, “Maybe next year I’ll come back and work part-time.
I’ve already had several job offers and I haven’t even retired