Tears of joy streamed down the cheeks of an elderly St Michael woman this morning when she received a birthday surprise from employees of the Barbados Ambulance Service.
Edna Licorish, of Plymouth Square, Cave Hill, St Michael, was presented with a birthday cake, champagne and a gift basket full of personal hygiene items and had happy birthday sung to her by paramedics and emergency medical technicians, today, on her 78th birthday.
She was in good spirits and shed a few tears when she blew out the candles on birthday cake and shared a toast with the emergency officials who were often responsible for taking her to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital.
The mother of four said that she was grateful for what she received and what was done for her on her special day.
“I feel very good. I would call it a surprise. I call them my friends and my husbands. When I call, once them got one [ambulance] available they come for me and take me up the road safe and we get along well. I got the orderly, the ambulance drivers, the nurses, the maids and the doctors – all of them very nice. I can’t complain,” she said.
Leanne Gooding, the EMT responsible for organising the good deed, said that following a conversation she had with Licorish when she and a paramedic transported her to the hospital on November 30, she took the initiative to collect funds from other employees at the service to put together and purchase the goodies, which she said she was aware would be appreciated by the elderly woman.
“She is one of our regulars and to me she is a very nice person. She is always pleasant and polite when we come for her. I don’t usually get attached to patients but I have a soft spot in my heart for her. I just wanted her to feel special for her birthday because of a statement she made to us. Going down the road I just started thinking about how I could make it happen,” said Gooding.
Gooding also indicated that “people need to know that our job is not just about going and picking up people”.
“We care about them and we are human beings. So whenever possible we would like to give back to the community,” said the EMT. (AH)