BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) -- Verna Lovan has worked in the healthcare industry for decades.
"She's got a caretakers heart," said friend and coworker for 44 years.
The year was 1958, the polio vaccine had only been recently developed, the first heart transplant hadn't even been completed, and it would be years before the cat scan was invented.
"Nursing is a passion," said Verna Lovan, nurse for Med Center Health.
That year, 1958, Verna Lovan started working as a nurse at the Owensboro Daviess County Hospital, then on to the Bowling Green Warren County Hospital in 1969, and now a part of the Medical Center, having three children along the way.
"It's just something very fulfilling when you are able to facilitate the care of the patient," said Lovan.
"We've worked together in many different roles and she's been the same all through the years," said Motley.
Motley has been a friend to Lovan for 44 years.
"I started nightshift at the old city county hospital and she was my night supervisor," Motley said.
"It's been a wonderful experience for me," said Lovan.
Lovan is now 80-years-old and still using her nursing skills.
"It's just something that's just innate in you, this feeling of having to care for people and see that they have the proper treatment and proper care," Lovan said.
Growing up, Lovan knew she always wanted to become a nurse with the support and encouragement of her father.
"He wanted us to be independent and job security if anything happened you would be able to take care of yourself," she said.
Over her 80 years, Lovan has many pieces of advice, but there is one she says is most important. "Be kind, that's the main thing, be kind to one another."
"Her patients say she has literally saved their life, she has set by them, comforted them, supported them, encouraged them. same with her peers, coworkers," Motley said.
When she first heard of her nomination as a Hometown Hero, her reaction was one-of-a kind.
"Well, I thought it really was a scam. I was just surprised really, of course you don't consider yourself a hero," she said.
Lovan's friends have grown to love her, learn from her, and admire her.
"She shows compassion and understanding with patients and always has a comforting air," said friend Mark Manley, who chose to nominate Lovan.
For her decades of dedication in the nursing field, her role in those lives saved and hearts touched, we honor Verna Lovan as this week's Hughes and Coleman Hometown Hero.
"She's taken care of so many people and touched so many lives," said Motley.
Verna says she will continue to serve as a nurse for as long as possible and then spend time with her husband of over fifty years.