Nurse a special treasure
After 41 years working at Queenstown’s hospital as a nurse and caregiver, 84-year-old Judy Stewart is now older than many of her patients.
In that time she has had no sick days but has retired four times – each time returning after a plea for help.
‘‘I think they just needed staff and all her mates are here anyway,’’ chuckled proud son Grant Stewart as his mother was recognised with a mayoral citation this week.
Judy said she was happy to help when she could, adding: ‘‘I just live around the corner and I’m on my own.’’
After training as a nurse in Timaru she moved to Queenstown with her hus- band and two sons in 1975.
For 27 years, she worked in the hospital as front line staff.
‘‘I retired from that job three times. Then I came here [the Lake Wakatipu Home and Hospital] for a week to help them out because they were short of staff and I’ve been here 14 years.’’
She retired from that position in November but returned as a casual staff member when she was called about three weeks later.
Queenstown Lakes Mayor Vanessa van Uden said she had given about 16 mayoral citations in the last six years, recognising the quiet achievers in the community.
‘‘You are a very special treasure. We are lucky to have you living here.’’