The nurses of Kenner Army Health Clinic marked the anniversary of the Army Nurse Corps and the more than 112 years of faithful and dedicated service in a ceremony held at the clinic on Feb. 1st.
Each year, the Army Nurse Corps celebrates their anniversary as a way to increase the overall awareness of the contributions and sacrifices made by members of the Army Nurse Corps said Lt. Col. Richard Prior, deputy commander for nursing at the clinic.
"We celebrated the anniversary this year with a luncheon and photo story reflecting back on the ANC's accomplishments," said Lt. Col. Richard Prior. "While we took a look back from where we originated, we also are looking forward to the challenges ahead of us today and in the future."
Prior served as the keynote speaker focusing on the theme "A Celebration of Transformation".
As the Army has grown and changed, the Army Nurse corps has adapted to the needs of a transformational Army expanding roles in support of the health care needs of our Soldiers and their family members, Prior said.
"When the Army Nurse Corps was founded in 1901, it was composed only of single white women who lacked uniforms, rank and privileges, or even a retirement. Since then, Army Nurses have proven their worth in the provision of patient care and have evolved into full spectrum leaders, culminating in LTG Patricia D. Horoho's selection as the 43rd Army Surgeon General."
For the nurses at Kenner the anniversary celebration was a time to celebrate the history and heritage in which Army nursing evolved Prior explained.
Army Nurses have supported every major conflict since World War I through the current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
"As an Army Nurse, I am proud to be part of the military nurse legacy," said Capt. Darci Martinez, nurse manager for the Troop Medical Clinic No. 1. "I take my responsibility as a nurse seriously, I know that our nation entrusts Army Nurses' to provide compassionate care to their sons and daughters."
Martinez has been an Army Nurse since 2007. During her career she has held a variety of positions include serving as a medical and surgical nurse and Interventional Pain clinical nurse officer in charge.
"Being an Army Nurse has strengthened my character, diversified my clinical skills, and given me the courage to have real purpose", Martinez said.
Of the eighty-two Kenner nurses four of them are retired from military service, one is a Army Reserve member and six are active-duty.
"We all embrace their role in caring for America's sons and daughters," said Martinez
The event also included the civilian nurses who dedicate their lives to service but not in uniform.
Angela Allin, a registered nurse in the Wilkerson Pediatric Clinic, said she enjoys working side-by-side with the members of the Army Nurse Corps.
"Their discipline and professionalism supersedes any that I've experienced," she said. "I admire their commitment to Army Medicine and to making a difference in the lives of military members and their families.