A tribute to any registered nurse or licensed practical nurse for their years of service, to be given during the nurse’s funeral by a nurse colleague or friend.

It takes a special person to become a nurse. In a sense, nursing is a calling, a way of life. It is appropriate that nurses are honored not only during their career, but also at the end of their life’s journey. Beginning in 2009, the Missouri Nurses Foundation has implemented the Nightingale Tribute to be used as a remembrance, honoring a loved one’s service to the nursing profession.

The Nightingale Tribute is intended to be presented by a nursing colleague or friend and scheduled as part of the funeral service in collaboration with the family, funeral home and place of worship as appropriate. The entire tribute takes only two minutes and can be placed anywhere in the service appropriate to the traditions and beliefs of the recipient’s faith.


When a calming, quiet presence was all that was needed,
she was there.

In the excitement and miracle of birth or in the mystery and loss of life,
she was there.

When a silent glance could uplift a patient, family member or friend,
she was there.

At those times when the unexplainable needed to be explained,
she was there.

When the situation demanded a swift foot and sharp mind,
she was there.

When a gentle touch, a firm push, or an encouraging word was needed,
she was there.

In choosing the best one from a family’s “Thank You” box of chocolates,
she was there.

To witness humanity—its beauty, in good times and bad, without judgment,
she was there.

To embrace the woes of the world, willingly, and offer hope,
she was there.

And now, that it is time to be at the Greater One’s side,
She is there.

NOTE: Pronoun can be changed.

© 2004 by Duane Jaeger, RN, MSN

Nightingale Memorial contributions may be suggested in care of the Missouri Nurses Foundation to further the professional practice of nursing through educational offerings and opportunities.

For more information, please contact the Missouri Nurses Foundation 573-636-4623, X103 or .

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