Any family is lucky to be blessed by having a nurse in its ranks — even more so a family like the Mencks, who were blessed with two very special nurses: Medical Solutions Traveler Jessie Menck and her grandmother, WWII Cadet Nurse Dorothy Elizabeth “Betty” Menck.
Jessie has been a nurse for almost six years and has been traveling since February 2015. Her specialty is Maternal-Newborn Nursing.
She was on assignment in September 2015 when she let her Career Consultant Jessie K. know that her beloved Grandma Betty had just passed away.
“Betty was a WWII Cadet Nurse, part of a program that voluntarily recruited nurses with the slogan ‘A lifetime education in a proud profession with expenses paid’ and provided enough nurses for home and abroad that a nursing draft was avoided. She also later worked for the American Red Cross,” Jessie shared via email when Betty passed.
“She was so proud to see me become a nurse,” says Jessie. “When she first moved into assisted living, there were several of her nursing school classmates in the same building. I completed a one-year accelerated bachelor’s program at Creighton University and they were all amazed that I completed my education in a year and I would always tell them that I could not believe they had glass IV bottles and had to calculate drips by counting. I also would tell them that I was envious of the capes and caps they got to wear. There were even two of her classmates at her funeral service, they really had a tight knit group. She really was one of the most put-together people I ever knew — never a hair out of place and always offering to be the hostess or help others.”
Jessie vividly remembers the moment she knew she wanted to be a nurse.
“It was when I overheard a young pregnant lady I used to work with say that she ‘ate a can of peas for dinner.’ It never occurred to her that she should eat protein or change her diet while pregnant. I thought, if I could educate just one person, it would be worth it,” she says.
Jessie looked into the Army after graduation and thought about following in Betty’s footsteps, but it wasn’t quite the right fit and the military accepts very few nurses each year (they accepted just five the year Jessie graduated!). Nonetheless, she is in very proud of her grandmother’s story and is sure it’s a great experience for those who go that route.
In 2015, Jessie started Travel Nursing and says that has been a great fit for her. So far she’s worked one location, in Iowa, and has extended several times. She has a platform to go on adventures, but enjoys still being close enough to home to visit often.
“I like the feeling of freedom,” she says. “Back [home] it felt like that scene in Groundhog Day when he wakes up to the same song on the radio every day. Not only am I doing something new, I am also in a new place and getting to explore on my days off. I’ve had so many great trips for fun since I hit the road. My favorite fun trip was to Mackinaw Island.”
Thanks to all nurses, like Jessie and Betty, for the amazing work you do. We wish Jessie and her family the best as they heal from the loss of such an amazing woman.
And on this Veterans Day 2015, Medical Solutions extends an extra special THANK YOU to all of the awesome military nurses out there! We are in awe of you and forever grateful for your service.