Nurses Gather For Nursing School Reunion - KULR-8 Television, Billings, MT

Nurses Gather For Nursing School Reunion

Posted: Updated:
BILLINGS -

The school closed a long time ago, but the nurses it trained over the decades gathered to celebrate what would be an important milestone for the school.

"Coming back here today, the first thing I did was get lost," said Harriet Crowley. She, along with up to an estimated 100 people, gathered at the St. Vincent Healthcare's campus in Downtown Billings for a reunion, and mark the former Saint Vincent's Nursing School's 100th anniversary.

Harriet graduated from the school in 1967. Back then, her name was Harriet Hale.

"Seem to me like we went through an awful lot of pre-admission testing, and then we were accepted and brought here," said Harriet "We were all very jacked. We all thought it was just gonna be, and it was a wonderful time!"

The school opened in 1903, and closed in 1972. During its almost seven decades in existence, the school was training ground for more than 1,000 nurses, and its students, at one point, formed the backbone of St. V's hospital staff.

"We work split shifts. We work seven (a.m.) to 11 (a.m.), then we go to have lunch, and then we go to class, and come back to work from three (p.m.) to seven (p.m.)," said Mary Ann Dugan. She graduated from the school in 1951.

Alumni present at the reunion say the world of health care was very different in their days.

"Our patients sometimes were with us a couple weeks, inpatient," said Harriet.

"We had to sterilize all of our needles, and hyposyinges and everything. We had the sterilizers that we put everything in," said Virginia Mandeville. She graduated with Mary Ann in 1951.

"We had to sharpen the needles that we inject people with!" said Mary Ann.

At one point in the 1950s, tuition was $100. For Harriet, the education she got at the nursing school was invaluable.

"We are not handmaidens of physicians. We are independent professionals, and most of us consider we want to be treated that way," said Harriet.

The reunion will continue on Saturday at the hospital's former student dorm, which is now the Marillac Auditorium.

  • LocalMore>>

  • Getting Down and Dirty for a Good Cause

    Getting Down and Dirty for a Good Cause

    Sunday, July 27 2014 7:47 PM EDT2014-07-27 23:47:00 GMT
    The Dirty Dash took place in Billings and over 800 people participated in the dirty run covering over 3 miles, with obstacles designed to test your physical stamina and more importantly, dirty you up.Kayla Mershon with the YMCA said it is fantastic to see people come out and support the YMCA by participating in the Dirty Dash.Along with getting dirty, people came dressed up in a whole of something, or a whole lot of nothing. Some of the most colorful individuals were Batman and His Minions. A...
    The Dirty Dash took place in Billings and over 800 people participated in the dirty run covering over 3 miles, with obstacles designed to test your physical stamina and more importantly, dirty you up.Kayla Mershon with the YMCA said it is fantastic to see people come out and support the YMCA by participating in the Dirty Dash.Along with getting dirty, people came dressed up in a whole of something, or a whole lot of nothing. Some of the most colorful individuals were Batman and His Minions. A...
  • Driver Crashes Near Moore Lane Home

    Driver Crashes Near Moore Lane Home

    Sunday, July 27 2014 4:45 PM EDT2014-07-27 20:45:05 GMT
    A male driver was taken to the hospital Sunday afternoon after crashing near a home on Moore Lane. According to Billings Police Sergeant Shawn Finnegan, it appeared the accident was medical related.
    A male driver was taken to the hospital Sunday afternoon after crashing near a home on Moore Lane. According to Billings Police Sergeant Shawn Finnegan, it appeared the accident was medical related.
  • Firefighters Gain Control of Lodge Grass Basin Fire

    Firefighters Gain Control of Lodge Grass Basin Fire

    Sunday, July 27 2014 12:51 AM EDT2014-07-27 04:51:32 GMT
    Two helicopters are dropping water on the remaining smoke of the Lodge Grass Basin Fire, located in the Bighorn Mountains of the Crow Reservation.
    Two helicopters are dropping water on the remaining smoke of the Lodge Grass Basin Fire, located in the Bighorn Mountains of the Crow Reservation.