Wednesday, February 6, 2008


by Naomi Remer

I left Cedar Vale the weekend after graduation and moved to Winfield where I rented a room from an elderly lady living about 2 blocks from Wm. Newton Memorial Hospital. I worked there as a nurse aide until September when I entered nurse’s training at the hospital. I went through school on a scholarship loan from the hospital and then worked for them for reduced salary of $200/mo. plus meals for 14 months. The amazing part about it was that my three year training, which included ‘tuition and training expenses including books, uniforms, health service and testing service up to a total of $530.00 for the three year basic course taken at William Newton Memorial Hospital School of Nursing.’

It was a fulfillment of my dreams. From the time I was a little girl, I never wanted to be anything but a nurse. I took all the science courses I could at CVHS to prepare me as much as possible for nurses’ training. I always thought I knew how to study but,when I started Anatomy/Physiology, Microbiology and Chemistry at Southwestern College, I had to learn all over again.

I graduated in August of 1960. I had to make up a month due to being out the first of my Senior year for surgery, so finished the 20th of September and was married on the 24th. We took a week for a “honeymoon” to the Ozarks and I started work on Saturday, October 1st. For the next 42 years I worked somewhere, taking out time to have two children, a broken leg, a broken knee (x2), a broken foot and a broken arm. I retired from nursing in November, 2002 and let my license lapse in 2005. I have no regrets about my life as a nurse, but I’m glad to be free of the stress that it imposed. The last 23 years of my career I worked as charge nurse and night supervisor at Halstead Hospital, Halstead, KS, just prior to it’s closing.

We took our first trip to South Texas in January, 2002, then February in California. I returned to finish my stint at Halstead. We began going to McCallen, TX for the winter in 2003. We did not get to go this year due to my husband’s health and other family matters. We plan to go back this fall, if the Good Lord allows.

A short note about the picture above. I got involved in ‘jams’ down south. I had been involved in musicians getting together and ‘jamming’ but there the term took on an all new meaning. There may be just a handful all the way to 55-60 ‘jammers’ who play together (hopefully). Each person gets a turn at the mike to sing, play, etc. and everyone plays along. You always hope everyone is playing the same song you are singing as well as in the same key. There is all levels of skill as far as the musicians are concerned. I found it a lot of fun. I took some guitar lessons, and play piano as well. I played piano for a couple of jams and otherwise just strummed along on my guitar until it was my turn to sing. You always hoped that someone else would not sing ‘your song’ before it was your turn. I sing some Country music and a lot of Gospel, which is my first love. That’s the part I have missed this winter in not getting to go.

There’s a lot more that has happened in my life, but that may come later.


wayne woodruff said...

Naomi, You have had an interesting life and it is nice to hear from a new voice with new experiences. My gosh, how did you break so many legs??? Accident prone or were you kicking your husband. No wonder the poor guy is in bad health now. Keep writing. We all want to hear more.

Phil Foust said...

You have had an interesting life (so far) Naomi ... and it will be anticipated that we will soon learn of further adventures. You look to me like you would have been a super nurse ... especially while you were yodeling country or even while you were gospelizing. (:>)

Is Eleanor your sister? (She was a classmate of mine.)

Gary White said...

Yes,Naomi, I also curious about your dangerous activities that resulted in such injuries! Tell us more.

DFCox said...

Naomi and Floyd have been a welcome addition to our community. Naomi has a beautiful contralto voice and she plays the piano by ear--in an exuberant style. She tapes her own songs, self accompanied, then dubs where she wants--all this in her own sound studio in their home. The tapes then go to a commercial studio to be burned onto CDs.
Dianne B. remembered she had "Moxie" and I certainly second that.

naomi said...

Yes, Phil, I'm proud to say that Eleanor is my sister. She and her husband live in Dexter. They are both retired and enjoying life.

Phil Foust said...

Well, Naomi ... no doubt she is also proud of you. She is a great gal!

The exuberant style of piano to which Don made reference is when you are performing gospel? The strong piano/organ accompaniment to gospel singers (to me) is effective to maximum listener enjoyment and (to me) inspiration.