Random Act of Kindness: Nurse shows special care to hospitalized teen

(Pittsburgh Post Gazette) During the Cuban Missile Crisis, I was 14 years old and in the hospital, having had surgery to remove torn cartilage from my knee. It was not a same-day or overnight hospital visit 50 years ago, like it might be today, but entailed almost 10 days. I got to know the nurses pretty well and they got to know me.

When the TV had coverage of the missile crisis, the woman in the next bed constantly predicted doom and gloom. She was almost hysterical most of the time.

One of the nurses, Tallye, took pity on me. She thought I was too young to put up with that, and she moved me into an empty room.

Tallye did not abandon me after she changed my room. She would drop in to let me know she was on duty and that she wanted to see how I was doing. She would ask if I needed anything and would let me know when she was finished for the day. She brought me snacks and pop and lots of good conversation.

The day before I went home was Tallye’s last day at work for the week. She stopped in to say goodbye, but I was napping — considerate as always, she didn’t want to awaken me. How do I know? She left me the loveliest note, a note I cherish even today, 50 years later.

I always regretted that I never got to say goodbye and thank you.

Her acts of kindness made a very difficult time much easier and will never be forgotten. With the anniversary of the missile crisis, I wanted Tallye to know I was thinking of her, as I have done every October since 1962.