St. Mary Mercy Livonia hospital nurse Lori Key sings Amazing Grace during staff huddle. Wochit
Nurses at St. Mary Mercy Livonia sometimes pray with each other or give encouraging speeches.
Lori Key uplifted her coworkers treating COVID-19 patients in another way: singing “Amazing Grace.”
A recording of the 28-year-old registered nurse singing during shift change a week ago struck a chord across the internet, racking up hundreds of shares on social media.
“The reactions that I’ve been getting, I’m … not just amazed but humbled by it,” Key of Belleville told the Free Press on Saturday.
She wanted to keep nurses’ spirits up so they can stay strong for their patients.
Key, who said all of her patients have COVID-19, sang the song Sunday then posted it to her Facebook page the next day.
“I was requested to sing during our morning huddle. This week on our floor has been CRAZY, we need the Lord’s Grace and Mercy during this time,” her post said. “Stay home if you don’t need to leave the house. Pray for the sick and health care workers at risk for this disease. God is with us always…”
Other nurses and her hospital shared the video and it’s been picked up on websites like Good Morning America.
Key has heard from people she knows as well as strangers. They’ve thanked her for the music and fighting tirelessly on the front lines.
“It’s nice to be appreciated,” she said, calling the response “overwhelming.”
Music has long been her passion. Long before the viral video, she sang while working, sometimes for patients in their rooms.
Key said she came from a musical family, grew up singing in church and has written songs.
“I didn’t think I would ever be a nurse because I was so focused on music,” she said. “One thing led to the next … I became a nurse and I love it.”
Key, who has worked at St. Mary Mercy Livonia since May 2019, went from treating patients coming out of surgery before the COVID-19 pandemic to working in a unit that has all COVID-19 patients, she said.
She works overnight 12-hour shifts and has seen the toll the virus is having on metro Detroit, including family members saying goodbye to loved ones over the phone.
“I had to put a patient in a body bag for the first time,” she said.
Nurses are stressed, anxious and afraid but remain determined to care for their patients.
If there is ever a time to be proud of the profession, it’s now, Key said.
“It just takes a special type of person to be a nurse and we are going to stay encouraged and we’re going to hold to our oath and take care of our patients, more than ever,” she said. “Because they need it the most right now. “
Contact Elisha Anderson: firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow on Twitter: @elishaanderson
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