Growing up, identical twins Sherry Espisito and Terry Payne always had similar interests. So it was no surprise to anyone when they both decided to go into the nursing field.
“When our dad was a patient in the old Good Samaritan Hospital, there was a nurse who would sneak us up the back steps to see him,” Sherry recalled. “I just knew from then on, I wanted to be a nurse.”
Terry agreed, explaining: “I wanted to take care of people. I saw that with my dad and wanted to do the same.”
Sherry and Terry attended the former M.B. Johnson Nursing School in Elyria and on July 15, 1974, they both started their first day in nursing school at Good Samaritan Hospital, now known as Firelands Regional Medical Center. Terry worked in the obstetrics unit while Sherry was on the medical (surgery) floor.
“We’ve never known anything other than nursing,” said Sherry. “It’s all we’ve ever wanted to know. It’s a part of us.”
The 60-year-old twins retired on the same day – Nov. 27, 2013 – and made their final exit together out of the door that used to be the original Good Samaritan entrance; 39 years, 4 months and 12 days after their first shift, according to Terry.
“We walked in for our first day on the same day,” said Terry. “It was only right to walk out for our last day on the same day, too.”
The women said that they were looking forward to retirement and plan on spending time with their children and grandchildren and doing some traveling. Sherry of Sandusky and Terry of Castalia also plan on participating in their favorite pastime together: Shopping.
“I’m really going to miss my friends and co-workers up in OB,” Terry said. “I loved the patients and seeing babies being born.”
Sherry echoed her sister’s sentiments: “We have such a fondness for Firelands, but it’s all what you make of it. I sure am going to miss them (co-workers).”
Firelands Regional Medical Center is nationally recognized for its award-winning care. As a 400-bed facility, Firelands was ranked No. 1 in Ohio (top 5 percent nationally) for spine surgery, 2013; No. 4 in Ohio (top 5 percent nationally) for vascular surgery, 2013; No. 4 in Ohio (top 10 percent nationally) for overall orthopedic services, 2013; top 10 percent nationally in acute inpatient rehabilitation and ranked in the top 5 percent nationally for patient safety, 2011. For more information about Firelands, visit the website at firelands.com.