Mid-South Hero: Chief nurse strives to help Veterans amid global health crisis

Making a difference for veterans during a pandemic

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Nursing mental and physical wounds of Veterans during a global pandemic requires a special person, one who is patient, caring and resilient.

No capes here, only a white coat with 30 years of experience -- Veteran’s Administration Medical Center Chief Nurse Marvia Balfour-Coleman.

”You know when the call came down to the Medical Center for their needs, I don’t even think I thought twice about it,” said Balfour-Coleman. “I said I want to go help and that’s what I did.”

Balfour-Coleman, a veteran herself, was deployed twice to assist staff at Oxford Mississippi State Veterans Home and Thomson Hood Veterans Home, in Kentucky amid the growing cases of COVID-19.

Working side-by-side with a hero brings comfort.

”She’s that go-to person. No matter time of day, no matter what the situation is,” said Michael Cain. “She is the one who helps you know - it will get better. I can get through this. She allows that reassurance.”

Balfour-Coleman answers the call of duty whenever and wherever a Veteran is in need.

”She has raised her hand to go out and help our other VA hospitals and some of our state veteran’s homes, where our veterans are located. And shown leadership skills,” said Angela Malik.

A health care professional fighting to provide quality care to patients, Balfour-Coleman is a leader on the frontlines in the department of calm assisted by faith.

”Well it’s part of my profession, you know, we have to do what we have to do,” she said. “And, you can’t be emotional providing care. You have to take feelings out of it and I pray a lot.”

Her husband considers her a SHERO.

The way Balfour-Coleman lives her life is a testament to how she serves her patients.

Thank you, Marvia Balfour-Coleman, for your service to our country, your dedication to wounded service members and for providing 30 years of nursing care to our community!

Congratulations! You are this month’s Mid-South Hero.

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