Anne Morse first reported for duty as an army nurse in Europe during World War II, but she continues to “report for duty” at Community Hospital every week as an auxiliary volunteer.
Her years of dedication and hours of service to Community Hospital are legend. Since her first days as a volunteer at St. Catherine’s Hospital in 1973, Anne has dedicated more than 16,000 hours to Community Hospital.
Her service as a volunteer has given Anne Morse the title of Exemplary Volunteer at Community Hospital, where she was honored in April at an open house. During the event, thanks to an anonymous donor, a bronze sculpture of Anne, created by Sondra Jonson, was dedicated. The donor chose Anne as the template that exemplifies the true volunteer and as a means to pay tribute to all volunteers.
Anne first honed her skills as a nurse serving military patients, while her husband piloted his way through numerous dangerous missions in the second World War. It was during this service to her country that Ann committed herself to the values of compassion, caring and respecting the confidentiality of her patients.
It has always been a tradition and the American way of life for citizens to help one another. In 1949, the American Hospital Association established what is known today as the hospital volunteer service. During the war, the Red Cross set up the Red Cross Nurse’s Aides class. They also gave classes in home nursing. These ladies were originally known as “Cheery Cherry” Red Ladies, later Grey Ladies and today, as the Pink Ladies.
In her first days as a St. Catherine’s volunteer, Anne soon learned that administrator Sister Paschala Noonan’s rules and regulations were reminiscent of the Army. She and her colleagues, such as Joy Weskamp, Veta Mae Ray, Mary Urich, Bea Curtis and Betty Harsh, dedicated themselves to the tasks at hand and became invaluable to the hospital. They took on every challenge—working within the bylaws of the auxiliary to accomplish the requested tasks.
Anne spearheaded many projects, served terms as auxiliary president during 1988 and 1989, and was always a willing participant—repairing linens, sewing baby blankets, knitting baby caps and making tray favors. She was a founding member of the patient escort service at Community Hospital, escorting patients during specialty clinics and assisting visitors.
Anne continues to share her talents and time as a Community Hospital volunteer today. No task is too menial for her to take on. She still puts in numerous hours manning the cardiac testing mobile labs two to three days a week, putting together inpatient packets, and other tasks that await her attention.
To further honor a lifetime of volunteerism, Anne also celebrated her 90th birthday at the open house. One of her favorite quotes by Pericles is engraved on a plaque above her sculpture: “What you leave behind is not what is engraved in stone monuments, but what is woven into the lives of others.”
In a congratulatory letter read by Sister Paschala, administrator at St. Catherine’s from 1966-1974 and at Community Hospital in 1974 from July to November, she said “during the 60s and 70s patients stayed much longer in the hospital, so volunteer services were deeply needed and appreciated.
“Delivering the mail was a big one with the book cart running a close second. I was Maternity Supervisor in those days and (Anne’s) smiling face cheered many an obstetrical patient confined to bed for ten days!”
— May 16, 2007
Anne Morse was honored in April as an "Exemplary Volunteer" during an open house at Community Hospital. During the event, a bronze sculpture of Anne was dedicated to honor her and volunteerism at the hospital. Anne is shown with Sondra Jonson, creator of the sculpture. A plaque above the sculpture is printed with a quote by Pericles: "What you leave behind is not what is engraved in stone monuments, but what is woven into the lives of others."
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