This is the job that Judy Perry was meant to have. She’s the Administrative Assistant for the Society’s Visiting Nurse program, and celebrating her 10-year anniversary.
She can look back to 1992 and see how her life has been leading up to her job today.
That was when she and her husband, a Naval Officer, moved to Hawaii. Judy didn’t know anyone, so a friend suggested she volunteer with the Society.
Judy began volunteering with the NMCRS office at Naval Air Station Barbers Point, Hawaii. She was in charge of the food pantry and was trained to be a caseworker.
Judy went on to volunteer at bases in Pearl Harbor and Groton, Connecticut as well. Overall, she has more than 1,500 hours as a Society volunteer, and she’s seen firsthand what the Society does.
“One of the first service members I spoke with was a young Sailor,” Judy says. “She’d given birth, but her baby only lived a matter of hours. It was just heart breaking.”
This Sailor’s family was back on the mainland. She was all alone and didn’t have the money to transport her child’s body back home for burial.
“Thankfully, we helped her,” Judy says. “We passed around the tissues as we heard her story. And that’s happened a lot of times.”
Judy has been involved with the Society throughout her husband’s active duty service. When he was stationed at the Pentagon for his last assignment, Judy learned about a job opening as an Administrative Assistant with the Society’s Visiting Nurse program.
She just happened to be at NMCRS Quantico when Director of Nursing, Ruthi Moore, was there. The two struck up a conversation, and right then and there, Judy signed on to her new job.
“This is the best job I could ever have,” Judy says. “My passion for the Society and the Visiting Nurse program runs very deep.”
With the generosity of our supporters, the Society’s Visiting Nurses provide free home visits to Navy and Marine Corps families for a wide variety of health challenges – which includes everything from pregnant moms to newborns and combat-wounded Marines and Sailors to retirees. Our nurses deal with beginning-of-life to end-of-life issues. Sometimes it’s a single visit. Other times, our nurses follow their clients for years.
Judy remains impressed by the compassion of the visiting nurses she works with. She knows they’re doing the right thing for service members every single day. Judy sees their dedication, and it fuels hers.
“Everything I do supports our nurses who are helping service members,” she says. “Our nurses are amazing, compassionate people, and I’m here for them whenever they need me. Whatever I can do to support them, that’s what I do, so they can help service members.”
There are times when that support involves just listening and being a friend. For example, when a nurse has a client who dies, Judy is there to listen, to talk and to cry with them. “That’s what a friend does,” Judy says.
It all comes down to a concept that’s familiar to everyone – family.
“As a young military spouse, I learned early on that, no matter where I was, I could count on the Society,” Judy says. “I knew that at the Society’s local office, I could get help, or I could help others in the military. No matter where my husband and I found ourselves, I knew I had a family waiting for me with the Society.”
Judy is doing her part for Sailors, Marines and their families in need every day through her job. We thank her for her commitment and dedication. She’s part of the Society family, and so are you. Together, we serve the ones who serve our country.