Medina Memorial celebrates current and retired nurses with recognition brunch

Photos by Ginny Kropf: More than 40 current and retired nurses attended the first ever nurses’ recognition brunch Friday morning at Medina Memorial Hospital.

By Ginny Kropf, correspondent Posted 13 May 2023 at 8:32 am

MEDINA – Orleans Community Health stepped up to show their appreciation of nurses, by honoring them at a brunch Friday morning at Medina Memorial Hospital.

More than 40 current and retired nurses attended the event, which surgical nurse Kim Gray says will be an annual event.

Former Medina resident Jane Punch came from Florida. She was director of nursing during her career at the hospital. She started working at the hospital through BOCES in 1973 and 1974.

“I loved every minute of it,” Punch said. “This is the gang that kept it all together all those years.”

Rebecca Mannella first came to work at the hospital in 1993 as director of cardiac services. She left and returned in 2015 when she became director of nurses for the North Wing and employee health nurse.

(Left) Debbie Guild, Charlie Smith and Mary Williams were classmates in nursing school. They all went on to work at Medina Memorial Hospital. They shared memories at the nurses’ brunch Friday morning. (Right) Mary Dunn, a nurse on the surgical floor, hugs Dorothy Casey, who worked 42 years as a nurse at Medina Memorial Hospital.

Elaine and Charlie Smith are both registered nurses. She worked in maternity for 20 years and Charlie is still employed there. He has done just about everything, from working in the ER, as ICU/ER supervisor and occasional shifts on the North Wing.

Dorothy Casey started at the hospital as a nurses’ aide and went on to become a licensed practical nurse. She would have 42 years of service when she retired in 2005. She continued as a nurse for Dr. Thomas Madejski several years after that.

Three registered nurses who attended went to nursing school together. Then, after graduating in 1973,  Mary Williams, Debbie Guild and Charlie Smith all ended up working at Medina Memorial Hospital.

Williams’ daughter Kate Brauen is currently director of pharmacy at the hospital. Williams was born at the hospital, she said.

Another nurse who attended was Brenda Sidari, wife of Medina mayor Mike Sidari. During her 30 years there, she worked in every department, including supervisor of the ER.

Everyone had such a good time and the turnout was so great, they will definitely be making this an annual event, according to Gray.

(Left) Joanne Bracey of Medina and Jane Punch of Florida share old times at the nurses’ recognition brunch Friday morning. (Right) Four nurses at Medina Memorial Hospital enjoyed catching up at the brunch Friday morning to honor nurses. From left are Leighann VanAuker, Darlene Etheridge, Dorothy Casey and Joanne Bracey.