Working as a housekeeper in the Surgery Department at Rideout Memorial
Hospital, Carol Saavedra is known for going above and beyond such standard
duties as keeping the surgical suites sparkling clean and ensuring that
the shelves are stocked with dressings, drapes and other surgical supplies.
She also helps with lifting patients onto operating tables, getting them
blankets - whatever the surgeons ask her to do.
"My work is really more than what people might consider 'housekeeping'
- it's challenging and exciting because it helps contribute to quality
patient care," she says. "I'm willing to jump in and help
out in any department, and I always try to keep a smile on my face. You
try to do your job well because you care, but being recognized s a STAR
Performer is very, very special."
Carol joined Fremont-Rideout 16 years ago and has spent the past seven
years in the Rideout Surgery Department. "I've worked on every
floor at both Rideout and Fremont Medical Center," she notes, "but
I especially enjoy this job. I've learned so much. I've even been
allowed to observe surgical procedures - always with the patients'
permission - which has truly been an educational experience."
Born and raised in Gridley, Carol has a large family in this area, including
two sisters, two brothers, her husband of 30 years, a grown daughter and
three grown sons. But her six grandchildren are her pride and joy.
"I'm almost always doing something with my grandkids in my spare
time," she says. "We love to go fishing and camping, especially
in the area up around Ft. Bragg, where we walk or ride horses along the
beach. I also enjoy teaching the kids how to bake - both the boys and
the girls. They love to experiment with recipes and create new things
in the kitchen."
Since Carol now lives on a five-acre property, the grandchildren have plenty
of room to romp around, as do her multiple pets: two long-haired guinea
pigs, a miniature Russian hamster, two cats and two dogs - a Chihuahua/Dachshund
mix and a miniature Pomeranian.
With all that activity at home, Carol's work might seem calm by comparison.