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This content was produced by Boston Globe Media's Studio/B in collaboration with the advertiser. The news and editorial departments of The Boston Globe had no role in its production or display.

2024 Salute to Nurses: Boston Children’s Hospital Letters

Oleta (Lily) Andros, Boston Children’s Hospital

Lily took care of our newborn baby, Patrick Meade, who was born with a congenital heart defect. She cared for him overnight, and she made an instant connection with him. He was so happy to see her one month later when he returned to the hospital. She is the best! — Nominated by Colleen Malachowski

Laurel Barrie, Boston Children’s Hospital

On October 21, we got the call that our daughter, Juniper, may have a liver match. We were admitted very early in the morning, and things immediately went wrong when crucial medication was withheld, causing our girl to become sick very quickly. Laurel was our nurse and was in no way responsible for that, but she was so incredibly helpful to us before our girl was whisked off to surgery. Many days later, we were welcomed back to 10 Hale by Laurel! She had made a special effort to make our daughter’s room very special with kind notes and unicorn sheets. We were fortunate enough to have had her many shifts during Juniper’s very long stay. 

After we went home on December 22, she was quickly readmitted on Christmas Eve with complications. Laurel was in 10 Hale and once again ensured that a very welcoming room was waiting for Juniper and me, complete with a Christmas tree, extra fancy sheets, many personalized notes, and hugs. She made the hardest thing our family has ever gone through so much nicer. She felt like a friend to me and was the one my daughter most looked forward to seeing. — Nominated by Shelby Boudreau

Rachel Bassil, Boston Children’s Hospital

We were inpatient with our newborn daughter for the first four months of her life. It was by far the hardest thing we have ever faced. Rachel went above and beyond to be there not only for our daughter but also for our family. She became Christiana’s primary nurse, and when we couldn’t be there, she was. She kept us updated and always advocated for our child. I truly believe their bond helped us all, including our daughter, get through it. Rachel became like part of our family. 

We have since been discharged and readmitted twice, and having Rachel there makes each time easier. She knows our daughter and her routine, and is one of those nurses you always want on your team. Her dedication and caring demeanor never went unnoticed. It’s nurses like her that make me want to go back to school and become a nurse myself! I don’t think she realizes the impact she has on her patients and their families. We are truly so grateful for her. — Nominated by Jana Velasquez

Jennifer Bilak, Boston Children’s Hospital

Jenn is an extraordinary nurse who goes above and beyond her clinical expertise to compassionately provide care to her patients. Jenn cared for both of my children in the NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit) and patiently answered all of our questions regarding our children’s care no matter what. She helped us feel comfortable as parents by making sure we were asking all our questions and concerns to their medical team. She would also help us advocate by ensuring we were included in rounds. 

Most recently, she took care of our daughter, Anaia. We were always so happy when Jenn was the one assigned to her because we knew she would take great care of her. We have fond memories with Jenn and enjoyed all the laughs we shared during our time in the NICU. Jenn made sure that she made us laugh, whether in person or on the phone, and would ask us questions about our life outside of the NICU. That’s how I knew she truly cared about our family’s well-being, too. Nurses like Jenn need this kind of recognition because they go above and beyond patient care, and that really means a lot to parents like me. Thank you, Jenn, for all you do! — Nominated by Alexia Arriaza

Sean Brannon, Boston Children’s Hospital

Sean is the most incredible nurse. He took care of my 3-month-old after open heart surgery, and you can tell he loves what he does. As a nurse myself, I was so impressed with Sean. He treated my daughter as if she was his only patient. I never had to ask him for anything; he was so on top of things! He even went above and beyond and helped me wash her bottles when they were piling up. That was so, so appreciated, as having a newborn with such a big surgery is super stressful. I knew my daughter was in the best hands with Sean if I had to step away from time to time. — Nominated by Ashley Sheridan

Frances Calapai, Boston Children’s Hospital

Frannie has gone above and beyond to care for our daughter during our weekly trips for her infusions. She treats us like family and makes sure my daughter is comfortable and enjoying herself. — Nominated by Joy Funk

Leah Cohen, Boston Children’s Hospital

Leah Cohen has been beyond amazing with our son, Kai. She listens to the child and the parent and shows a genuine interest in our son. Leah has gone above and beyond to assist him and seeks the advice of others when needed. She has helped us navigate this medical journey, and our son loves seeing Leah Cohen all the time! — Nominated by Lindsey Flores

Larissa Demers*, Boston Children’s Hospital

Larissa was simply amazing from the very first day our daughter was life-flighted from Pennsylvania to Boston. She was one of our main nurses, and we were thrilled about that. She cared for our very ill 3-month-old baby girl as if she were her own. She was always so reassuring and incredibly easy to speak with. I always felt 100 percent safe when she was on and caring for Gemma, our daughter. She just put me at ease with her genuineness. She was the best nurse we’ve ever had. — Nominated by Janelle Seigfreid

*Larissa Demers is a former Boston Children’s nurse.

Samantha Devlin, Boston Children’s Hospital

Our daughter was an inpatient for almost seven months until she passed while waiting for a heart transplant. Sam not only took good care of her and loved her as her own, but also looked out for our family along the way. Sam attended all team meetings concerning our daughter to provide continuity in her care. Sam advocated for what was best for our daughter on a regular basis. Sam was able to answer every single question I had and make me feel at ease with the plan. Sam helped our family through a very challenging time and is now an important member of our family. My husband, son, and I are forever grateful for all she did for our daughter and us. — Nominated by Kayla Gagnon

Alex Gelaides, Boston Children’s Hospital

As a nurse in the Division of Epilepsy and Clinical Neurophysiology, Alex helps manage the care of critically, medically complicated patients. My son, Bruce, is one of them. He has a rare and very complex neurogenetic condition called Angelman syndrome. It can be overwhelming and often even scary for a parent, but nurses like Alex help make it feel a little lighter knowing he’s on our team. 

For example, when Bruce was twitching during sleep, Alex very quickly triaged with expert doctors. He kept me updated the entire way and then taught me something I could bring forward for my son’s future safety and care. He is incredibly patient and parent-oriented, and he has a very high level of empathy for all we are managing as parents of kids with extra medical and support needs. I truly feel as though he is part of “Team Bruce,” and for that, we’re so grateful. — Nominated by Danielle Kowalski

George Georgoudis, Boston Children’s Hospital (Sports Medicine in Norwood)

George has always been extremely friendly and helpful whenever I saw Dr. Stracciolini. He explained everything in great detail, which made me feel comfortable when getting my injections. He deserves to be recognized for all his hard work! — Nominated by Samantha Shea

Jessica Lally, Boston Children’s Hospital 

Jessica went above and beyond, taking care of my daughter like she was her second mom. She taught me everything I needed to know medically to keep taking care of her, too. She is an outstanding nurse and human being.  — Nominated by Fadia Alasmar

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Eddie Liao

Eddie Liao, Boston Children’s Hospital

My son is medically complex. Eddie has been our consistent RN through the Colorectal and Pelvic Malformation Center. He has shown compassion and care from the first day we met him. He always brings a smile to my face. He has talked me through many troubling times and helped us with troubleshooting, many times to save us the almost two-hour trip to see the team in the clinic. 

Eddie has been a big part of our journey and has made the bumps in the road seem not so big. He always has a smile or something kind to offer, even when I know I’m being a frantic, overwhelmed, overstimulated, overtired, or frustrated (or any combination of those) medical mom. Just thinking about my interactions with him makes me smile. Even my mom knows when I’m having a conversation on the phone with him; she can tell the difference in my voice and demeanor. He’s an amazing human and deserves all the recognition for that. — Nominated by Patricia Linhares

Maggie Maloney, Boston Children’s Hospital 

Maggie was spot on when she realized that I was having a stroke. I was insistent that I was okay, but she knew the lay of the land and called an ambulance — all of this happened while she was out of town, on the phone, on her graduation day from nursing school. Not only am I so thankful that I was saved from being more severely injured, but I was taught an incredible lesson: this was a focused, knowledgeable young woman who should be listened to. I’m also happy to say that she has continued her studies and has become certified as a nurse practitioner. — Nominated by Peter Wheeler

Kathryn Martin, Boston Children’s Hospital

Kate is a beloved hematology/oncology nurse on 6NE at Boston Children’s Hospital, but she also used her outstanding skills to care for our father when he was in home hospice at the end of his battle with liver cancer. The strength, care, and compassion she was able to show for him, our mother, and all her siblings while going through her own grieving process was nothing short of miraculous, and we will be forever grateful that she was able to lead us through that time. — Nominated by Alexandra Hadley

A young woman with brown/auburn hair wearing a black short-sleeved short smiles in a headshot with a gray background.
Christine McCabe

Christine McCabe, Boston Children’s Hospital

When we met nurse Christine in December 2021, she instantly made us feel like family. Due to our experience and situation with my daughter’s condition, I had a difficult time trusting medical professionals. With Christine, that all changed. Layla and Christine shared an instant and beautiful bond. She would come into our room even on days she didn’t have my daughter as a patient and say hello, interact, and even sometimes rock her in the chair, allowing me to run to the cafe to grab a coffee. She was always mindful of my feelings and very thorough with her work. She is one of those nurses you never forget because of how compassionate and trusting she is.

We took a trip to Boston in 2023 for the Boston Marathon and had the pleasure of meeting up with Christine for some much-needed laughs and hellos. Christine also drove two hours to our hometown in July 2023 to celebrate Layla’s one-year liver transplant anniversary. We are in constant contact to share updates and photos of Layla and her growth. She spent so much time with me, my daughter, and her father during our time at Boston Children’s Hospital, and she has become family to us. We are forever grateful to Christine and all the nurses on 10 Hale for giving us the best medical experience under rough circumstances. — Nominated by Briann Poehler

Megan Nolan, Boston Children’s Hospital

I am writing this letter to wholeheartedly endorse Megan Nolan for her outstanding contributions as the director of nursing and patient care operations at Boston Children’s Hospital. Megan has consistently demonstrated exemplary leadership, advocacy, and mentorship in the field of nursing. With a nursing career spanning 18 years, Megan has accumulated a wealth of experience and consistently exemplified the qualities of a dedicated and visionary nursing professional. Her dedication to the pediatric patients and nursing staff at Boston Children’s Hospital is truly commendable.

Megan goes above and beyond her role by engaging with the community and promoting awareness of the operating room environment. Notably, she organized and led an event for elementary and high school students, offering them a unique “Day in the Life of the Operating Room.” The event included interactive experiences such as a bone lab, virtual reality simulation of scrubbing surgery, airway lab, and gowning and gloving practice. As a panelist, Megan effectively influenced young minds, encouraging them to consider careers in the operating room.

Megan is an exceptional leader, advocate, and mentor who has significantly contributed to the advancement of nursing practice at Boston Children’s Hospital. Her innovative initiatives, advocacy work, and commitment to mentorship have had a lasting and positive impact on the nursing community, both within our institution and beyond.  — Nominated by Andrea Dyer

Roceli Rosado, Boston Children’s Hospital

Our daughter Luisa says, “I love Roceli so much. She is the best nurse in the whole world. She knows how to take care of me. I feel better right away when she takes care of me.” 

As a parent of a rare child, we feel blessed to have our daughter in Roceli’s care during our heaviest days inpatient. Roceli is one of our daughter’s earth-side angels. She has served us as an educator who hears and eases our concerns. She celebrates Luisa’s progress in healing, explains, and gives our daughter agency. I feel short on words that capture her artful excellence in care. Roceli is a national treasure. — Nominated by Evanice Pineda

Emma Streeter*, Boston Children’s Hospital

Our daughter was born with an omphalocele. This means that her liver was on the outside of her stomach because of an abdominal wall defect. We knew ahead of time and were prepared. Boston Children’s Hospital was amazing in saving our daughter and surgically fixing her defect very quickly. 

Every person in that NICU was incredible, but Emma changed our lives. The care and love she showed Audrey was utterly amazing and life-changing. She loved our daughter and fought for her when feeding became hard in the beginning. They were ready to send Audrey to the surgical floor, but she started not being able to keep food down. Seeing how scared I was, Emma made sure to contact whoever she could to get us more time in the NICU until we had answers. I cannot thank Emma enough for making us feel special and keeping Audrey safe. Thank you, Emma, for all you do! — Nominated by Jessica Makara

*Emma Streeter is a former Boston Children’s nurse.

Christine Symmes, Boston Children’s Hospital

Christine was incredibly compassionate throughout our daughter’s hip dysplasia journey. Eleanor was diagnosed at six weeks old and immediately put into a hip harness at the same visit. As a first-time mom, I was particularly overwhelmed and upset, and Christine went above and beyond to comfort me. She calmly explained how the harness works to correct her hips and that Eleanor would not notice or mind the harness.

Christine even gave me her cell phone number and answered my panicked call after work hours after leaving the hospital. We corresponded over email and phone numerous times when we had more questions throughout the next six months. She explained her rationale with the clinical importance and relevance, and communicated with empathy to help us process the information. We cannot thank Christine enough for making this phase of our life easier. — Nominated by Elisabeth Tierney

Jacqueline Thomas, Boston Children’s Hospital

Even though it has been almost eight years since Jacqueline was our nurse, our interactions with her stand out as exceptional. Our youngest son was born with an apparently genetic nerve condition that resulted in respiratory failure and progressive total paralysis. Jacqueline cared for him with love, respect, compassion, and excellence, attending to his every need with sweetness, honesty, and sincerity. Over Fynn’s six years on earth, he needed 24/7 nursing care, and Jacqueline‘s care stands out as the best. — Nominated by Aimee Lalime

Paige Wallat, Boston Children’s Hospital

Paige demonstrated tremendous compassion when I was in the hospital after my neurosurgery. I was having a tough time, and she did everything in her power to make it as positive as possible for me. — Nominated by Riley Davidson

Amy Walsh, Boston Children’s Hospital

Amy has been a huge advocate for me and now my son. We both have pacemakers and travel from Florida for care. She is always available when I need her and goes above and beyond. She has been present at my surgeries. Most recently, my son had major heart surgery, and she came and checked in daily. During his stay, he needed an emergency pacemaker, and she was right there with me as support. — Nominated by Tracey Grissom

Amy Walsh, Boston Children’s Hospital

Amy has provided professional, compassionate care for years for our three children with heart defects. In addition to her kind and warm disposition, she treats each child as an individual and respects their voices as important team members. 

She goes above and beyond for every patient in her care. She demonstrates that not only as a clinical nurse at the hospital but also as a trustworthy, dedicated nurse at the yearly Keeping the Beat Camp for Children with pacemakers and implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs). Without Amy’s dedication, our children would never have the experience of being able to attend a summer camp like other children. She goes above and beyond, and is someone we consider a part of our family. I know I speak for many other cardiac families who feel the same way. Her genuine care and concern for her patients shines through in every way. Thank you, Amy, from the bottom of our hearts. — Nominated by Tracey Neumuth

This content was produced by Boston Globe Media's Studio/B in collaboration with the advertiser. The news and editorial departments of The Boston Globe had no role in its production or display.