‘I cannot imagine doing anything else’

Name: Jean DuBois, RRT-NPS

Years as respiratory therapist: 27

Years at Children’s: 10

Area of expertise: Cardiac ICU

Family: Alvin (husband), Doug (son), Heather (daughter), their spouses and four grandchildren - Danielle, Paige, Gavan and Gracie.

Hobbies: gardening (especially roses), quilting, needlework, reading, photography and most of all - family.

Why respiratory therapy: I  pursued the field of respiratory therapy after the untimely death of my granddaughter, Ashley, who succumbed to a respiratory virus in 1985. Knowing absolutely nothing about medicine and not getting answers relating to Legionnaires Disease and why this baby died led me to seek answers. She led me to a profession to serve. I do what I do to honor her short 5 months of life.

More than a job:
I have a passion to care for children. Each and every patient has a gift. It is not a job for me; it is something so much more rewarding. Knowing that you have the ability to make each day, hour or minute count for not only the patient, but also the family is an honor for me.

A special patient:
I had the opportunity to meet 6-year-old Kenedi Groves and her parents in December 2005 when she was transported to Children’s. I have been one of her respiratory therapists with all of her surgeries, and each time she came to Children’s her family asked about me. I have gone to check on her after her catheterization procedures and had great visits with her. I remember when she came with her parents for a checkup, and they found me on the 11th floor. We visited in the hall, and she told me all about her purse. She was just a toddler. Her mom has sent me Christmas cards every year to let me know how she was growing. She told me that she had to sleep with her “neb mask” because it was her security, and her dad told me it was my fault. It was because of all the respiratory treatments that I gave her when she had her surgeries. When she was admitted this last time, she came from the clinic, and as she came into the unit, she said, “Jean is here!” She is a joy to have as a patient. While her treatment is only maintenance at this time, she is still very much part of our care to keep her ready for a heart. I am so blessed by Kenedi and her family.

At the right place:
This is a remarkable place with wonderful people who have children in their heart. The Heart Center is the best in the country. I have had the opportunity to meet great families, physicians, medical staff, nurses, techs, and health unit coordinators and see what great teams can accomplish. I could talk about Children’s for hours, so, I will just say I believe in divine intervention that directed me here. As I near the Golden Years of my career, I cannot imagine doing anything else anywhere else.

Next read Repiratory Therapist Joe Cram’s story, I Understand the Stakes and Take my Job Very Seriously.


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2 Responses to ‘I cannot imagine doing anything else’

  1. Danny Pacheco RRT-NPS October 31, 2012 at 10:29 pm #

    Way to go Jean, U are a great therapist and mentor to others. Not to mention you always take great care of your patients and their families.

  2. Kali Smith October 27, 2012 at 11:35 am #


    Thank you for all you do for your patients and their families. Our granddaughter Brooke Ballard was one of your patients. Thank you for sharing your passion with our family.

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