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126 nurses give their lottery winnings to two co-workers who need it the most

What is the odds of winning the lottery? They say that buying more lotto tickets does not translate to an increase chance of winning the jackpot. However, for this group of nurses working at Mercy Children Hospital in St. Louis, Missouri luck seemed to be on their side when one of the five tickets got them a $10,000 from Mega Millions. 

Not too big of a winning? Remember, that’s still money you didn’t have before as most wise old folks would say.

It is not however the amount of money that caught the attention of several TV networks, it is what they did with it. Their simple gesture is truly worth re-telling.

Mercy Children’s Hospital has family doctors, 125 pediatric specialists, and over 700 pediatricians. It specializes in children emergency medicine and with the only pediatric intensive case unit, has the top NICU in Saint Louis, and is a proud member of Mercy Kids.

The group of nurses, after realizing that a mere $56 would be taken home by each nurse following tax cuts, decided to give the $7,200 to two of their co-workers who needed it the most. The recipients are neonatologist Casey Orellana’s husband Phil and nurse Gretchen Post’s youngest son Jack.

Phil has had much difficulty since his diagnosis of having sarcoma cancer earlier this year. Since July, he was not able to work and even had to have various treatments as the cancer had begun attacking his lungs. Casey had to also cut half off her regular work schedule to spend more time taking care of Phil and their two children.

Having no idea how she could pay for all the medications and bills, Casey said that the generous and self-less act ‘touches her heart’ and she has expressed much gratitude for the amount which would help in the family’s on-going struggles.

Jack’s case was a really sad one as he committed suicide the night the Mega Million draw was happening. Jack’s mother Gretchen did not expect this untimely event as she recalls Jack for ‘always having smile on his face.’ She thanks her co-workers for this generosity and says that the money will be used for Jack’s funeral. Jack was only 17-years old.

Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) nurses and staff members believe that this little contribution would be enough to show people that they are their own family. They know that they all have to fight their own battles but it is most comforting to know that the NICU family would be a strong support group as they have drawn closer to each other over the years.

Phil Orellano’s words echo the essence of NICU’s stand for families: “It certainly is good to know that there are people who support me and that I am not alone fighting this battle; it makes things easier.”

If the nurses’ act of kindness restored your faith in humanity, then please don’t forget to share this story to your family and friends.

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