Children's cancer nurse retires from Leeds role this week after 33 year career
A Macmillan nurse at Leeds Children's Hospital retires this week after a career spanning more than 30 years and roles across the county.
Carole Appleby, Macmillan Children's Haematology and Oncology Outreach Nurse Specialist at Leeds Children’s Hospital, has stood side-by-side with families and their children for 33 years, as they’ve faced up to the most devastating news - that of a cancer diagnosis.
Having started training as a dual qualified adult and children’s nurse in 1984, Carole has since worked in various roles across Harrogate, Martin House Hospice, Barnsley, Leicester and Leeds – and even a stint in New Zealand in between.
She said: "I’ve absolutely loved it - being there for families in various guises and supporting them through their cancer experience. Unfortunately for some it didn’t end in the
way we would have liked with the death of a child, and in other cases some have gone from strength to strength. I’d like to think my involvement in their experience made it a little bit
something I will treasure. Every one took a bit of my heart with them.
“I will miss the families, young people and children ever so much. Some of them have become extended families. In some cases, looking after leukaemia patients, you’re looking
after them for three years. You see them go from toddlers to school-age children, or primary into secondary school. You see them develop and they become a part of your life, and you
become a part of theirs. The thing I’m finding hard is leaving my bereaved families. Because you’re privy to a really difficult part of their lives. It creates an unbreakable bond and that’s
going to be the hardest thing. They’ve all been really supportive.”
In recent times, Carole has championed the work of Macmillan in her personal life also, taking part in many fundraising activities from walks, balls to murder mystery nights and fully intends to carry this work on following her retirement.
Katie Pierce, Macmillan Cancer Support’s Partnership Quality Lead in Yorkshire, said: “On behalf of everybody at Macmillan, I’d like to congratulate Carole on a wonderful career
which has included working in some of the most difficult circumstances for families and their children.
"Carole has been an absolute pleasure to work with. Not only has she done an amazing job supporting those in her care but she has been a huge advocate for Macmillan by championing the Clinical Nurse Specialist role and taking part in many fundraising activities. We can’t thank Carole enough for all of her hard work, she will be missed and we wish her a long and happy retirement.”