Veterans Day is a special time to reflect and share appreciation for the dedication and sacrifice of the men and women who have served our country in the armed forces. We are honored to take the time to honor the veterans among us and celebrate their remarkable contributions.
Providence Health Plan’s values and promise are grounded in serving others, something that Chief Equity Officer Timshel Tarbet, who served 8 years in the United States Air Force, believes healthcare workers and military members have in common.
Providence Health Plan caregivers shared special moments, memories, photos, and stories of their time in service. “We honor those who have sacrificed and dedicated their lives to be of service to our country,” Tarbet says. “Each has a unique story grounded in service,” she says.
Below are just a few of the many who served:
Anne Conwell, United States Air Force, 21.5 years
"I commanded the Mobile Air Staging Facility, [aeromedical evacuation] liaison, and [aeromedical evacuation] support teams deployed to Louis Armstrong International Airport in New Orleans, La., after Hurricane Katrina. Working closely with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, [my] leadership and knowledge of aeromedical operations contributed significantly to the evacuation of 22 hospitals and more than 2,500 patients."
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Ralph Cummings, United States Air Force, 8 years
"I joined straight pretty much straight out of high school when the job markets weren't very good. It was a good learning experience for me. I was in the communication arm of the Air Force and was pretty much in a bunker my entire career. I was stationed in England for three years and Hawaii for four years."
Nicole Garnatz, United States Navy, 6 years
"From the moment you join a branch of service, you get in line, and you're in line with your peers. When I think back on what I accomplished during the time I served, I'm amazed at the list, but when I was living it, it felt like just another day with my fellow service members. Yes, we trauma bond, we make some lifelong friendships, and we also make some temporary ones that get us through the tougher times. I'll forever be thankful for the friends I made and the mentorship I gained. I hope it is reflected in my day-to-day work as a PHP Caregiver."
Mitchell Jones, Army National Guard, 20 years
"In 1987, we were deployed to Ecuador. It was my first time going to another country. Life there was very simple, but the people appeared genuinely grateful for what they had. Compared to what we had in the United States, they had nothing. The average annual income in 1987 was about $200. The houses had no windows/doors, and the floor was dirt. They washed themselves in the river, and when we had a chance to meet and talk with them, they were pleasant. I retired in 1999 Sargant First Class; I so appreciate the opportunity I had to serve."
Rachel Leland, United States Airforce and Reserve, 6 years
"I loved being a Medic. I worked primarily on a Pave Hawk helicopter with other medical staff, and we did a lot of good during Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom. I made friends during that time I will have for life. Being in the military also taught me the true meaning of integrity, commitment, and sacrifice. I grew more in those six years than I had the 25 years prior or since. I am forever grateful for the lessons and friendships."
Providence Health Plan is proud to have veterans as part of our team, and we deeply appreciate their contributions. “It is with great respect and admiration that we acknowledge our veteran employees and their family members,” Tarbet says. “We understand that their journey has often involved significant sacrifices and challenges, and their resilience is truly commendable.”