You’ve got to keep moving forward.” That’s what Sherril Card-Gordon’s husband Henry always told her. It was those words that inspired her to take up nursing after Henry passed away at age 64—just two months after he was diagnosed with intraocular melanoma that had aggressively spread to his liver and bones.
A former preschool teacher, Sherril enrolled in nursing courses at a local community college, volunteering in a hospital emergency department and working as an orderly to gain more experience. Once she graduated, she took up nursing jobs in cancer care.
Nurse Gordon, as she is now known, works at NYU Langone’s Perlmutter Cancer Center. As a clinical trials nurse, she helps patients navigate and find new cancer treatments that may transform even an otherwise poor outcome into survival. “This was an opportunity that Henry did not have, and I wanted to be able to offer this to others,” she says in this episode of the Vital Signs podcast.
When Nurse Gordon walks into a patient’s room, she works hard to build trust and involve them in decisions about their care. She’s also very mindful of family members, who play an important role in helping patients cope and get better. “I was once that family member.”