Williams Retires after 43 Years of Service
Coworkers honored Teresa Williams of NMMC’s Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation Department with a retirement reception July 26.
Teresa Williams, pulmonary rehabilitation specialist with the Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation Department, has retired with 43 years of service to North Mississippi Medical Center.
Williams graduated from Shannon High School in 1973. She studied social work at Freed Hardeman University in Henderson, Tenn., for a year and then transferred to Itawamba Community College in Fulton for a year. She joined the NMMC staff the day after her 21st birthday in 1976 as part of an on-the-job training program to become a respiratory therapy technician.
Williams enjoyed it so much that she pursued training at Itawamba Community College and became a Certified Respiratory Therapy Technician in 1979. She became a Registered Respiratory Therapist in 1985. When Mississippi established respiratory therapy licensure in 1991, Williams became license number 22 in the state.
Williams worked in the Respiratory Care Department until October 1995, when she transferred to Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation. Her last day was July 26.
“I have loved every minute of it,” Williams said. “I always said if I didn’t like it any more, I was going to quit, but I never got to that point.”
It’s hard to tell which she will miss more—her coworkers or her patients. “I love the staff, but I’m in it for the patients,” Williams says. “They are my people, my babies. We have them three times a week for three or four months, so we get pretty involved in their lives.”
Williams is most appreciative for the opportunity to have spent her entire career at NMMC. “The hardest part is going to be leaving my family at NMMC,” she said. “I was raised here pretty much. I love the people at our hospital.”
While retirement is bittersweet, Williams says she’s ready: “I have a 90-year-old Mom and a 1-year-old grandson that I just don’t want to miss any more time with.”
Her first priority is getting some things done at home. “I have a least a year’s worth of things that I want to get done at my house and in my yard,” Williams said. She also hopes to travel some and enjoys sewing, reading and photography.
She is married to Bennie Williams, who was a truck driver before joining NMMC Ambulance Services four years ago. They live in Tupelo, as does her mother, Rivers Wills; her two sons—Matthew Steele (wife Amber) and Zachary Steele; and grandchild Tristan, 1. Her large family also includes five stepchildren and 11 step-grandchildren. The Williams are members of Lawndale Church of Christ.