Following six years of working as a paramedic with the people of Switzerland County, I find that I must leave your EMS Service. I will not be able to work, nor share with the wonderful people of Switzerland County.
Coming from an urban background, I was not in my comfort zone when I came here. My partner, Cathy Curry said, “Wow, where did they get this one?” Well, I appreciate my partners, present and past for sticking with me, and hopefully someone may have received some benefit from my time with you.
I cannot begin to express my love for your county and its people. I have made hundreds of friends, some even started as patients, but all ending in a bond or respect and well wishes. I will miss each firefighter, EMT and First Responder, but will take so many memories. Some of you may remember some of the highlights: The annual rides through snow laden woods and creeks with Tom Scott and his six-wheeler partners; the drives through the county with HL Gullion until I knew every township and all of their roads; nights folding laundry while Renda Mills learned her medic drugs and their doses; the fun we had at Posey and with the hailers in training; working with the new students, firefighters and meeting their families; having dinner with the Amish and their beautiful families; watching Carrie (Keller) Reed become an aggressive firefighter; having a great dispatcher like Mandy Kist who was not afraid to tell the head of a hospital and helicopter service, “We’re doing it this way because my medic said so.” (Thanks, Mandy); and I will miss Wendy and Katie and their uncanny knack of knowing what to feed me without asking. I appreciate the love shown to me by my coworkers, Renda Mills, Andy and Amanda Brookbank, and Steve and Janelle Lustig, who not only opened their homes, but their families to me, helping to ease the pain of missing my own family while working long shifts.
All of these experiences have helped me grow as a medic and a person. On more than one occasion, people have come to me, hugged me and said, “Thank you for coming here, you are our Angel.” That meant so much to me, but it is not that I helped you, but rather the people in this county, that have helped me to be a better person now, than I was when I came here.
I have seen incredible spirit during challenging times in the people in Switzerland County. I hope that I have been able to absorb some of that spirit and character with my soul. I will miss Rooster and his calm, but always in control, manner. Hopefully, I have gained a little of his spirit also.
God bless each of you individually. It is my prayer that you will bless each other, as you have blessed me. A special thank you to the groups below for allowing me to work with each of them: Dispatch, Sheriff’s Department, Jailers, Mr. Covington, C-Jay’s, Vevay police, the Nays and Staff, First Responders, Auxiliary, Fire Fighters and EMTs from Jeff Craig, Moorefield, Posey, Florence, Patriot, and East Enterprise, the EMA Board, the local Churches, the Relay for Life Committee, the Township Trustees and Town Council and County Council, Drs. Kearschner and Bernard and Carol Banta and the crew from KDH ED, the staffs from DCH and CCMH EDs, Dr. Frede and Dr. Willage, the staff at Swiss Villa, Tonya and Staff from the Print Shop, Belterra EMTs and Safety Department members, my breakfast buddies in East Enterprise, and dinner partners in Vevay, and the wonderful EMT partners with whom I have had the honor of working side by side. They are my second family. I would also like to mention a couple other groups that are very special, and bring out a kinder, nicer Nadine: my good friends, Faye Lewis, Eddie Markland, Patty Chase, Roy and Bonnie Duckworth, Alberta Pickett and my twin Glenda Sullivan.
Of course, I cannot forget my Church Family from Florence who give me unconditional love and support, regardless of my faults and corny jokes. They are the best, and I love them all. My biggest thanks is to Jesus Christ to whom I have prayed over many critical patients, most of whom have had good outcomes. I have learned to lean on Him more through this job than any other experience in my life. I have lived the verse, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” (Philippians 4:130. He delivers miracle after miracle, even one as simple as your first jugular stick on a critical patient without veins. He had made me grow in the past six years, with a lot of help from the people in this county. Cathy Curry saw me the other day, and gave me her blessing. I guess I finally figured it out. Thanks, Cathy.
I will always have the highest regard for the people of Switzerland County. God bless each of you.
Nadine J. Swift
(formerly of Switzerland County)
To the Editor:
It was absolutely delightful to see the full front page featuring Tony Catanzaro’s metal sculptures. His creations are true art in every sense of the word and public acclaim of his genius is long overdue. Kudos to the Vevay Newspapers for shining a light on this marvelous artist and his extraordinary work. We wish him continuing inspiration and success.
It has been more than a year since we’ve had the pleasure of attending one of Vevay’s First Friday events. With dire economic news weighing heavily on everyone’s minds, it was a joy to wander the downtown streets of the charming town, enjoying German food at The Café while listening to local musicians including the obviously multi-talented, Tony Catanzaro on his wash basin bass. We enjoyed the rare leisure of a slow-paced visit to various galleries and merchants, purchasing local honey and crafts. It’s heartening to hear and see so much local talent on display – Switzerland County is rich in its incredible number of gifted residents.
Among our pleasures of the evening was our last stop – the always-welcoming home of Peggy and Tony Catanzaro. Their home is a live-in art gallery. My husband, Jim, and I are in awe that they have always made their home so unabashedly hospitable. In our opinion, they are loving generosity personified. Such big-hearted members of the community are my unsung hometown heroes. Their presence exemplifies all the best there is about living in a small town. Perhaps this is beginning to sound like a fan letter for the Catanzaro family? Well, it is. Vevay is much blessed and richer for these remarkably kind, tremendously generous souls. Thank you, Peggy and Tony. You’re the best.