This very pretty lady is my mom. She was in nurses' training in this picture, close to graduation. She was in the first graduating RN class in Waterloo, IA. She nursed for over fifty years. At the age of 72 she entered college as a full time student, and graduated in three years Magna cum laud. Then, at 75 she entered graduate school and graduated in two years with an MA in counseling. At that time she began working for Black Hawk Mental Health in Waterloo, IA. She worked until she was 86, not leaving until the federal grant that subsidized her position was terminated--in other words, Uncle Sam ran out of money for the program, Mom didn't run out of energy and determination to do her job! And she continued playing (she is a consumate pianist, organist, and song writer) and entertaining at area nursing homes, adult care centers, churches, right up until she had to enter the nursing home herself two and a half years ago. She continues playing daily for two hours, entertaining at her own nursing home, and others in the area.
On July 17th of this year, 2007, she celebrated her 98th birthday. Still going on her own power, still practicing and auditioning, she claims, for that big pipe organ in heaven. As much as I'm sure heaven will enjoy her joining in their big band, I'm grateful we have her with us here, entertaining the locals who experience joy and share smiles and laughter as she plays their favorites.
MOM, you have set the bar pretty high for your kids. As your only daughter you've given me quite a view of what a woman can accomplish, in ANY era, at ANY age! Quite the "hand me down"--Thank you.