It won't come as a surprise to anyone who knows her that Becky Smith is working as a part-time nurse at Cherokee Medical Center. That's just where she belongs.
Smith “retired" as the Director of the hospital's Emergency Department at the beginning of August, but is still working when needed. She has been with the hospital for almost half a century. But don't worry; she's not going anywhere. She simply changed uniforms and is still providing care for the community.
It's a labor of love for Smith. She is linked with both the hospital and the Cherokee County community. She knew exactly what she wanted to do 48 years ago when she was first hired.
“I have wanted to be a nurse since I was 6 years old. This is my hometown hospital, so it made sense for me to work here," Smith said.
She is familiar with all areas of Cherokee Medical Center.
“I worked in medical surgery when I first came here. I eventually became the charge nurse there. Back then, we did everything on that unit," she said. “We delivered babies, and we had an ICU in addition to a large medical surgery floor. I would occasionally help in the Emergency Department.
She became director of the Emergency Department in 1981 and was also in charge of the ambulance service when it was still based at the hospital.
“I have never been bored, and I love what I do," Smith said.
Being a part-time nurse gives her more time to do some things she has put off and time to do some things she really loves.
Smith said her house was renovated, and they had to put a lot of things in storage. Getting it back in order has been a priority. She and her husband are also big Alabama football fans. Traveling is also on her to-do list and she hopes to make a trip to the West as well as the Florida Keys.