Retired nurse finds purpose reading to nursing home residents

For more than 50 years, Irene Piersall poured her life into caring for patients as a nurse who discharged people from the hospital.

Today, she recharges residents of a local nursing home by reading inspiring and faith-based stories to people often confined to wheelchairs.

Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 10:30 a.m., she takes a seat in the main community room at the skilled nursing care facility and begins to read stories about people’s Christian faith, the Citrus County Chronicle reported.

Irene retired as a nurse a few years after her husband died. She knew she needed to find a purpose for her life. Now 71, she found it by reading to people who can often no longer read themselves. They may not be able to hear every word of her soothing voice, but they look forward to her visits.

“I put myself in their shoes,” Irene told the Chronnicle. “I’m healthy, but one day I could be where they are. Just saying five words to someone or smiling, you don’t know the difference it makes in someone’s life.”

The full story is available at the Citrus County Chronicle.

Photo by Nancy Kennedy at the Citrus County Chronicle.