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Angels In Our Midst (Clara Harris)
PENSACOLA, FLORIDA - When she graduated from nursing school at Dillard University, Clara Harris knew the one place she would *not work was the nursery. Well, there was only one job opening when she looked for work... It's funny how things work out for the Angels In Our Midst. Clara Harris, NICU Nurse; The first place I interviewed was the intensive care nursery. But, when I saw those small babies and heard the monitors, I said, Oh, I can't do that. Oh, yes, she could. Her second day on the job, Clara Harris traveled with one of the doctors to bring a critically ill newborn back to Sacred Heart. She had to take that baby from its parents. Clara; I loved it from that day on. And it was going out to get those babies and convincing them that those babies would be o.k. in our hands. Since 1975, Miss Clara has committed her life to caring for the most premature and critically ill babies and convincing their parents. For more than *20 years, she has been the Patient Care Manager Of The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Dr. Jon Nagel, Neonatologist; She lives by the golden rule. She treats everyone with respect. In the 30 years that I've known her, I've never heard her say an unkind word about a single soul. Even with monitors constantly calling and frightened moms and dads unceasingly needing comfort and reassurance... Clara; The chapel happens to be on the second floor. And my prayer everyday was that I could be for the families, for the babies and my staff, what I needed to be. Billie Dixon, RN; If you were sick or had problems at home, you'd get cards in the mail, phone calls the next day. And she cares about you personally. Billie Dixon would especially know about that caring. She's a NICU nurse now herself, but she was one of Clara's patients....just a "few" years ago. One of the thousands who've crossed her path again. Clara; One of those things that really gets to you. Ages you and it's like, Oh no, I'm not that old. It's the milestone that we start out for; is to get them out, get them out the door. Billie and all of her babies who've left the NICU give her comfort as she passes the torch. She's stepping down as manager of the unit. To honor her, a retired co-worker, Jane Roberts funded a special family "Quiet" room, that bears Clara's name. Dr. Nagel; She certainly personifies everything that a nurse should be. Billie; I think some nurses get burned out and she's never lost that caring factor. She was meant to be here. Ironic, the very place she never saw herself, is the place she now finds impossible to leave. Clara; I can not leave the nursery. I just can not. I'm hoping they can find something for me to do until I just can't walk around any more.