Mid-South Hero: RN creates care packages for patients after her battle with COVID-19

Updated: Feb. 26, 2021 at 3:14 PM CST
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - When a global pandemic put health care officials fighting on the front lines exposing them to the coronavirus, one registered nurse turned her health struggle into hope.

”I didn’t do it to get any recognition from it,” said Shelia Anderson. “I did it because it helped me, and I wanted to help others.”

Anderson, a registered nurse of 35 years, contracted COVID-19.

After her experience, she began putting together COVID-19 care packages that include a thermometer, Kleenex, masks, Clorox wipes, hand sanitizer, Lysol spray and a device to measure the air capacity of the lungs -- a spirometer.

“It expands the lungs help to strengthen the lungs, help to loosen up any secretions that may be in there that could potentially lead to more infection or pneumonia,” said Anderson.

The lesson after sickness was in giving.

”It has taught me, over the span of my career, to be appreciative for what I have to offer other people, the gift of nursing,” she said.

Fellow hospital worker and COVID-19 survivor, Muriel Simmons, was on the receiving end of that much-needed gift, kits made with money out of Anderson’s own pocket.

”I’m just living proof of working in a hospital, this stuff is real,” said Simmons. “It’s nothing to be played with.”

Anderson is Memphis-born and raised, so investing in her community one free COVID-19 care package at-a-time meant a lot to the recipients and their families.

This hero is always looking out for others.

”A person that is eager to give back without looking for some type of reward. Somebody that is just willing to go out and beyond and above. Sheila is certainly that person,” said Iris Houston.

Shelia Anderson as you celebrate 35 years of being a registered nurse, we celebrate you.

Congratulations! You are this month’s Mid-South Hero.

”I would just say to the community, take care of yourself during this pandemic,” said Anderson. “Make sure you wear your mask. Wash your hands. Social distance. And, take care of each other.”

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