Letter: Story of nurses on the front lines reminds Darien resident of her grandmother
To the Editor:
I just had lunch outside, masks and six feet apart, with my good friend who is an ICU nurse at Stamford Hospital. Perhaps the very best part of it, besides seeing her, a couple of other good friends and her two kids, was getting her to talk it all out. [She said her job is] incredibly busy, exhausting, heartbreaking and sometimes rewarding.
Both your story about nurses in last week’s paper and hers remind me of the many letters I have from my grandmother — who was from Waterbury — written to her parents from France during World War I. She was a nurse near, and sometimes on, the front lines. [Her days were] busy, heartwarming, sad and often desperate but her spirit and belief in what she was doing almost never wavered.
She had a very positive attitude, which helps. [Her days started] off with a drill in case of torpedo attack aboard the Rochambeau, the ship she took over. The alarm sounded and all the crew and passengers went to their lifeboats. The torpedo missed them but she could see its wake! She ended up marrying an aviator from Minnesota who was shot down and ended up in her ward! I am named after her — Helen Chase, and was given a nickname — Nina. Her birthday is on Armistice Day!