Whitfield employees recognized for 50 years of service

Published 3:20 pm Tuesday, May 16, 2023

Sisters Esther and Irnetta Murdock were awarded special plaques for their 52 years of service to Whitfield Regional Hospital. Pictured L-R: Whitfield CEO/Administrator Doug Brewer, Esther Murdock, Irnetta Murdock, and retired Whitfield CEO Art Evans.

In a special recognition ceremony last Tuesday, May 9, sisters Irnetta and Esther Murdock were recognized for 52 years of service at Whitfield Regional Hospital. The sisters, who are LPNs (Licensed Practical Nurses), were presented with plaques commemorating their years of dedicated service to the hospital and the Demopolis community.

Mayor Woody Collins remarked on how rare it is to have employees with 50 years of work history, and commented on the sisters’ dedication to healing the people in their care.

“You don’t see many 50 year employees in hospitals anymore and you won’t see them anymore. Their dedication to this hospital, their dedication to their patients, and to this community is just unparalleled and wonderful,” said Collins.

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Both Irnetta and Esther began working at WRH in 1971. Esther said that when she began working for the hospital there was only one RN (Registered Nurse) working the night shift, and WRH was a 90-bed hospital.

During the 52 years they have worked at the hospital, the sisters have very seldom missed a day of work. An exception to this occurred in July of 1999 after Irnetta had an accident that kept her away from work until March of 2000.

“Other than that, I very seldom have called in and we’ll work through the rain, snow, sleet and everything,” Irnetta.

Ester said she has only called in twice in the 52 years she has worked for WRH.

When asked what inspired them to keep working this long, both sisters agreed that it is because they love what they do and how they are able to make a difference in their patients’ lives.

“I enjoy what I do. Sometimes you get aggravated, but the bottom line is that I enjoy what I do,” said Irnetta.

Both sisters said that they are grateful to have been able to work in their careers for so long, and are appreciative of the opportunities they’ve been given over the years.

“I didn’t think I would ever do it. Before I got to retirement age, I said as soon as I get to retirement age I would retire. But then after I reached that milestone, I realized that I wanted to continue working,” said Esther.

To end with, Irnetta and Esther provided a bit of advice for younger medical professionals who still have many years of work left ahead of them.

“Things are not going to stay the same. And they’re not always going to be as you want them to be. But you have to go through these things to get where you need to be,” said Esther.

Irnetta said it is important to come into work with the right mindset because there will be patients who will be difficult, but still be in need of the best care the hospital can provide.

“You cannot be biased with people. The biggest drunk on the street deserves as much respect as the richest man in town. You have to treat people right. You have to treat them like they’re human beings,” Irnetta.