Army Sgt. Christopher Kelley knew just how to comfort an old soldier who was spending his first night at the hospital in February.
“Sleep well; I’m on point,” Kelley told Doug Linton, a retired Army major who was recovering from hernia surgery at Dwight D. Eisenhower Army Medical Center.
That expression, meaning Kelley was taking the most exposed position in a patrol, put Linton at ease and earned Kelley an award Tuesday for his exceptional care as a nurse at Fort Gordon’s hospital.
Kelley, an Iraq War veteran, was joined by Spc. Tuere Shaheed and Tabitha Roland in receiving the first DAISY Award, which was established by the family of the late Patrick Barnes to recognize outstanding care by nurses.
It’s an honor bestowed in 1,200 hospitals across the country and internationally, but Tuesday’s awards were the first to be given at Eisenhower.
The three nurses received hand-carved sculptures from a tribe in Zimbabwe that feels the same appreciation for their healers, co-founder Tena Barnes Carraher said.
“They are treasures to our community,” she said.