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Submitted photo by Brian Moor

Cathy Stephens: Caring for mothers and babies

Cathy was born at St. Joseph Hospital in Burbank California the day after Thanksgiving. She grew up in Burbank living in the same house for her entire childhood until she moved to Big Bear Lake in her senior year of high school. She played the flute throughout high school and was involved in the Burbank Police Marching Band. She moved out a year after high school graduation and left for nursing school at Brigham Young University in Provo Utah where she lived until graduating with her nursing degree. She has loved her career as a Registered Nurse since 1984. I have a passion for caring for mothers and babies and cannot imagine doing anything else. She returned to school to obtain certifications as a lactation consultant childbirth educator, and car seat inspector to be better able to provide services to our Barstow families. She has wonderful grown children who are all currently in college. One in a masters program at UCLA, one at University of Hawaii, and two at VVC. She is also the grandmother to three very adorable grandsons.

Q: Describe a special memory you have in Barstow.
A:  The day we moved into the new hospital after years of waiting, and attending the ground breaking that day was pretty special.

Q: What do you do in your free time?
A:  Garden — starting as soon as the frost is gone. I love growing vegetables. I also love to fish and there is not enough free time for that. In the winter I like to read, crochet and sew, and of course make raspberry jam.

Q: Tell us one thing that most people don’t know about you.
A:  I can not kill bugs. I think they have a right to be on the planet just as I do so most people don’t know that I will catch them and relocate them. Right now, I am nursing 8 baby toads until its warm enough to let them outside.

Q: If you could change one thing about the world, what would it be?
A: I would eliminate winter, it’s just been to cold lately.

Q: If you could change one thing about Barstow, what would it be?
A: I would love for there to be more activities for people to participate in, young and old.
Q: What person, living or from history would you most like to have dinner with and why?
A: Hillary Clinton. I think she is a strong, educated woman who has balanced a lot of things.  

Q: Who is someone who had a big influence on your life?
A:  My Jr. High School counselor. She genuinely was a caring person who told me that I was worthwhile, that I mattered and that I could do anything that I set out to do. I wish that I could let her know that her kindness has carried me throughout my life.

Q: What talent do you most wish you had?
A:  I wish I could sing.

Q: What is your favorite quotation?
A: Never underestimate the difference you can make. To the world you might just be one person, but to one person you might just be the world.

Q: What words of advice do you have for the next generation?
A: Start putting money in a retirement account while you are young. Before you know it you will be needing it.

Q: Tell us about the charities or causes that are close to your heart and why.
A: The March of Dimes is the charity that I regularly give to. They help prevent preterm birth, which is responsible for the majority of newborn morbidity and mortality. They provide educational materials, research and are an amazing organization:

Q: What is something you are particularly proud of?
A:  I am most proud of my parents. They married very young, 15 and 16, and did a great job raising two daughters. They are still married after 52 years and are still very much in love. I am proud to be their daughter.

Q: What’s your favorite movie and why?
A: Fried Green Tomatoes. I love how true friendship is honored and the small town all sticks together to help each other.

Q: Tell us about your favorite thing about living in Barstow?
A: I love working in Barstow because its a small community and you really get to know families and their stories

Q: What is the best thing about your job?
A: I love everything about my job. I get to help bring new life into the world, teach new moms and dads and help support them after their birth. I guess the best thing is that I get paid for doing it!
Q: What book had a significant impact on you?
A: The Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O’Dell. It is one of my earliest memories of reading. I learned that friendship can be obtained with animals and they can be more faithful than humans, so I have always cared deeply for my four legged friends.

Q: Of all the places you’ve been, what’s your favorite and why?
A: Hawaii. It is the most beautiful place, and my daughter lives there.

Q: If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?
A: I hear Costa Rica and Belize are very beautiful, so I think I would go there.  

Q: Tell us about one thing you want to accomplish in life.
A: I would love to learn and be fluent in Spanish.

Q: What’s your favorite place to eat in Barstow?
A: Del Taco. I go there at least once or twice a week for a taco and a Diet Coke!

Q: Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
A: Hopefully still working at the hospital doing what I love.

Q: What’s your favorite guilty pleasure?
A: Frozen yogurt.

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