Adele Danon played a vital role during World War II, but she was never formally recognized for her service — until now.
A 91-year-old resident of Gurwin Jewish Nursing & Rehabilitation Center in Commack, NY, Danon describes herself as a “born nurturer” who was drawn to nursing while volunteering with the Red Cross as a teenager.
“One day, there was a poster advertising the U.S. Nurse Cadet Corps hanging in the office,” Danon recalls. “The Red Cross nurse pointed to the sign and said, ‘That’s for you!’”
Danon and her fellow Nurse Cadets trained to fill positions left open by healthcare workers who left to serve in combat zones during the war. Her passion for caring persisted after the war ended, and she continued to work as a nurse until her retirement at age 85.
Nurse Cadets have yet to receive veteran status from the U.S. government. In April, Danon received a Congressional Proclamation recognizing her for her service during a star-spangled celebration at Gurwin, an accolade she wishes all cadets could have received, along with veteran’s benefits.
“Some of the cadets struggled during their lives,” Danon says. “I felt that [the proclamation] was not only for me, but for all those cadets who served.”