510 Buckeye Ave | Sidney, OH 45365
937.492.3171

Full Circle Caregiving



From L to R: Penny Cron, Bob Speelman

August 30, 2018
I spent last night at Sidney Care Center, our 51 bed skilled nursing facility in Sidney, Ohio. I had the pleasure of working with Penny Cron. Penny is a 30-year veteran STNA and an absolutely amazing individual. Sidney Care Center is the only nursing facility Penny has ever worked at, and several of the nurses I spoke with said if you need to know anything about anything, everyone knows to ask Penny.

Penny is a kind of utility player for Sidney. She’s an STNA, who also does scheduling, central supply, laundry, medical transports, serves in the dining room, and on and on. Working alongside Penny, I was quickly impressed with her passion for her job, her love for her residents, and coworkers, and her devotion to her family which was everything to her.

Throughout the evening, I witnessed Penny’s loving care and interaction with the residents, and one staff member told me that whenever they had a particularly challenging resident they would always send Penny in, and she would quickly develop a relationship with them.

I asked Penny what has kept her doing this job for all these years, and how do we get others like her. Penny told me her mom was an STNA, and that’s how she got into it. Caring for people just seems to run in her family. Penny said, “I love the residents and can’t imagine doing anything else.”

I asked Penny about her family and her eyes lit up. She told me about her daughter Deidra, who is thirty years old and lives in Troy, and her son Kyle, who is twenty-five years old and lives nearby. Then she started to tell me about her husband Keith- the love of her life. He was a welder, and in 2012 after a hard-fought battle with lung cancer died in her arms. The tears in both our eyes began to flow. It was obvious that her love for him today is as strong as the day they first met.

Something remarkable happened as we were sharing this moment together. A resident who overheard the conversation reached out her arms to Penny. Penny immediately went over to her and hugged her, and they embraced for several minutes. The caregiver was now receiving the care. Everything came full circle; and I new exactly in that moment why Penny has continued for 30 years, caring for her residents.

“Who can save a child from a burning house without taking the risk of being hurt by the flames? Who can listen to a story of loneliness and despair without taking the risk of experiencing similar pains in his own heart and even losing his precious peace of mind? In short: “Who can take away suffering without entering it?”
- Henri J.M. Nouwen, The Wounded Healer


The Cron Family: Deidra, Penny, Keith, Kyle

Bob's Blog

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