In 1977, photos were taken of a nurse at Albany Medical Center as she comforted infant Amanda Scarpinati in the pediatric unit. Scarpinati had been severely burned by a steam vaporizer.
Fast forward 38 years to present day. Scarpinati used social media to try and track down the identify of that nurse so she could thank her for her loving care. Posting the treasured photos on Facebook, Scarpinati's quest soon went viral. She shared how much the photos meant to her --when she was taunted on the playground or suffered through reconstructive surgeries, she found comfort thinking of the nurse who cared.
“Just to see the love and the caring in these pictures just blows my mind,” Scarpinati said. “That a complete stranger can just open themselves up and care for you, and I just want to be able to thank her for that.”
Facebook friends led her to Susan Berger, now nearing retirement. The two met recently at the Albany Medical Center in New York, thanking each other for the lasting impact of their connection in the pediatric care ward 38 years ago.
You could feel the joy and excitement as the women were reunited. Scarpinati said it felt as exciting as Christmas. Berger gasped as she turned the corner to see Scarpinati’s face.
“You know, I held her for the longest time,” Berger recalled. “‘Does she really have to be discharged and go back to her unit now? I’d like a few more minutes.’ She was just so good and so trusting and amazing for such a tiny baby.”
Scarpinati's life was made better thanks to Berger's care. Through their story, we are reminded that nurses make the difference and our impact can truly transform a life.