Elaine Kellett started her career as a cadet nurse at St Luke’s Hospital in Middlesbrough, in 1972, aged just 16.
She said: “My dad used to work in St Luke’s and at that time we were allowed to visit him at work. I knew from the moment I stepped into the hospital that I wanted to begin a career in nursing as I was fascinated by the great work that was happening and I wanted to help people, too.
“The first two years as a cadet nurse was a huge learning curve and I have such fond memories of working in the different hospital departments.”
Elaine successfully completed her nurse training in 1977 and it wasn’t long before she became a ward sister, the youngest in the hospital at the age of 23.
“I was so proud of this achievement as most of the ward sisters were a lot older than me, but they were brilliant mentors and I learned so much,” Elaine said.
Elaine continued her passion for nursing and has since worked at TEWV’s Parkside Health Resource Centre, where she actively mentored and encouraged students to take up nursing as a profession.
Associate director of nursing and quality, Sharon Salvin, said: “I can’t thank Elaine enough for her hard work and dedication to the trust over the last 50 years, she has been a fantastic role model to others within the service throughout her career and she will be dearly missed by us all.”
Elaine gives thanks to her career in nursing and plans to spend her retirement travelling around the UK and abroad, making memories with her family.