Mater Rockhampton midwife says farewell after 45 years

When Registered Midwife Jeannette Sands stood on the steps of Kenmore House at Mater Private Hospital Rockhampton last Friday (12 August), her Mater journey had come full circle with her retirement after 45 years of nursing, with 42 of those at Mater.

Jeanette first set foot in Kenmore House when she started her nursing training in January 1974.

“Every time I walk through Kenmore House, I relive stories from my training days with some great nurses, doctors and Sisters of Mercy,” Jeanette said.

After completing her training, Jeanette worked at Mater Private Hospital Rockhampton as a ‘Sister’ (Registered Nurse) until January 1978, before taking a break when she married and then undertook her midwifery training.

Returning in January 1981, Jeanette has worked as a Mater midwife ever since, apart from short breaks to have her own two children.

Jeanette was fortunate to work alongside many Sisters of Mercy in her time at Mater.

“My first matron was Sister Magdalene, and my last matron was Sister Marie Riddell. Sister Martina was in charge of St Anthony’s — our new surgical block — and Sister Thaddeus was in charge of theatre, while Sister Irene Mercy was one of our educators. They all provided excellent training,” Jeanette said.

Mater Private Hospital Rockhampton Executive Officer Sue Thurbon said Jeanette had been a valuable member of the team.

“Her skills and expertise are to the highest standard and she will be greatly missed,” Sue said.

The final word goes to Jeanette:

“I wish all who work at our Mater Rockhampton an enjoyable experience and may they all experience the dignity and respect they all deserve to receive and give to others,” Jeanette said.



Nursing graduation, 1977.


Midwifery graduation, 1981.


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