Topeka COVID-19 nurse helps community, patients through pandemic

Remarkable Women

TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT)- In a time where frontline workers have saved lives and helped us through the challenges of COVID-19, one Stormont Vail Health nurse shows what it truly means to be a remarkable woman.

Angelina Cooper, a Charge Nurse at the hospital, is selfless, patient, kind and extremely hard-working, according to her friends, family and co-workers. She has worked long, overnight hours in the COVID wing trying to protect others and keep her patients safe during the pandemic.

“She hasn’t ever really complained,” Alicia Guerrero-Chavez said, Cooper’s sister. “I know that in her position she is most focused on her patients and her staff and just making sure that they have what they need and that everybody is working together to get us out of this.”

The career path of nursing runs in Cooper’s family, but she doesn’t know the exact moment when she wanted to become a nurse. She has just fallen in love with the job throughout her career.

“My grandma was a nurse, my mom and I went to nursing school at the same time,” Cooper said. “It was just kind of this thing that I was interested in. It’s definitely not anything I’ve ever expected to be. Nursing brings so much out of you and it’s a career that you have to embody.”

She said nursing is one of the most rewarding things in her life. It still comes with its own challenges, like ratios and staffing during the pandemic, but Cooper handles them with grace. The year 2020 even gave her a new outlook on her job.

“At first it was scary, a lot of the unknowns,” Cooper said. “But then it kind of took on a new meaning for a lot of us. You found this new renewal in your job and what it meant to be a nurse at a time where the family wasn’t able to be with the patient.”

Cooper also said nursing is a work of the heart. For COVID-19 patients, the thought of isolation can be scary. But for her patients, that isn’t the case.

“For families I didn’t want them to think about that,” Cooper said. “I wanted them to remember that a nurse was right there with them, helping them along, not only physically and medically, but emotionally.”

Cooper is a nurse who puts others before herself and takes on each day with a smile on her face.

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December 31 2021 11:59 pm