Celebrate Caring: Patients call her 'Super Nurse' for her many roles

ByAlicia Vitarelli and Dawn Heefner WPVI logo
Monday, May 16, 2022
Celebrate Caring: Patients call her 'Super Nurse' for her many roles
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From childhood, Lenore Sears wanted to be a nurse. Now, her work, home and community life all revolve around nursing and she does it despite disability from multiple sclerosis.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- This is the 4th year Independence Blue Cross is saluting outstanding nurses through its Celebrate Caring campaign. This year, one winner has been nicknamed "Super Nurse" by her patients.

Lenore Sears-Gay chose her career early, according to her late mother.

"She says that from the time I could talk, I always said I wanted to be nurse," she recalled.

As a little girl, the compassion of a nurse during a hospital stay solidified it.

"At that moment, I knew I wanted to make everyone else that I came in contact have that same feeling," she said.

Lenore started out as a Candy Striper at Pennsylvania Hospital. Today, she specializes in home care for medically fragile children.

"They're on ventilators or on things to monitor their oxygen level. And the parents need a lot of support in their home to manage these children," she said. "I love educating the public. That's my passion. I love meeting those needs, where the hospital lets off."

She fosters some of those children to help the overwhelmed families and she even adopted one.

"Who more better to care for her than someone who's a nurse?" she said.

Beyond her role at home and work, Lenore holds coat and supply drives, volunteers for vaccine clinics and went to Haiti twice after the 2010 earthquake.

Her passion and dedication inspires co-workers, especially when they learn she has multiple sclerosis.

"She has her moments where she really doesn't feel well. But she fights through it," says Tiffany Penn, a long-time nursing colleague and friend. "It's never a second thought. It's like OK, that needs to be done and it gets done."

Independence Blue Cross says Lenore exemplifies the impact nurses make.

"How they really go above and beyond every single day to improve the health of their patients, their patients, their families, and those people in their communities," says Koleen Cavanaugh, Vice President of Marketing for Independence Blue Cross.

Like many nurses, Lenore is always learning so she can do more. After moving up from LPN to RN, she recently got her master's degree, but is already studying to become a nurse practitioner.