TYLER, Texas (KETK) – Amanda Welch is a registered nurse at CHRISTUS Trinity Mother Frances in Tyler who strives to lift spirits even in the darkest of times.

She works inside the COVID unit at the hospital, spending her days raising spirits and spreading positivity through her care.

“I always write a scripture on the board… try to give a little bit of encouragement and spread the love,” Welch said.

In her 21 years of nursing, she says she’s answering a personal call from God to spread positivity and encouragement wherever she goes. Still, working at a hospital during a pandemic can take an emotional toll.

“The biggest challenge was dealing with the emotional aspect of, you know, these families not being able to come and visit,” Welch said. “And, that’s hard on the family, that’s hard on the patient, but it’s also hard on the nurse.”

She said her normal schedule is 36 hours per week, with three 12 hour shifts. Through the pandemic, hospital staff has picked up a lot of extra shifts.

After her 12 hour shift on the COVID floor, spreading hope wherever she can, Welch finds strength through her support system.

“The Lord is my strength. He is the one that strengthens me through everything, but then of course my family is all the world to me as well,” Welch said.

With a devoted husband, nine children and soon to be six grandchildren, Amanda’s life is full of love and pride.

“They’re all just genuinely good people and I’m just so proud of that fact,” Welch said.

Her service does not stop at East Texas. For the past few years, Welch has given up her vacation time for service by taking missionary trips to the Dominican Republic and Zimbabwe.

She said people there sometimes walk for miles and miles to get medical care.

“You think you’re going there to give a blessing, but you get so much more,” Welch said.

Still, Welch would tell you she doesn’t feel she qualifies as a remarkable woman.

“I can’t imagine why somebody would choose me for something like that, because I’m just about as ordinary as you can get,” Welch said.

Welch lives everyday letting her faith be bigger than her fear, and that’s only a part of what makes her so remarkable.

“Amanda is my niece, and I have had the pleasure of watching her grow into a mature and very responsible, hard-working woman. She has been a registered nurse for years, and no matter what chaos happens to be going on at the time, whether it is in the emergency room, the delivery room, or in the COVID unit where she now works as a charge nurse at Mother Frances, she has an infectious smile and laugh, all while performing her duties with great professionalism and keeping her patients as calm as possible. I actually watched her do this with my dad, her grandfather, as he was blighted out of Palestine. Currently, she also has three of her five sons serving in the Navy. Between her duties at home and working tirelessly to keep up with her son’s and their needs, she always seems to have a positive Christian attitude. She also battled COVID herself recently and was very sick, but she beat it and is back helping others do the same. I truly can’t think of a better candidate for this award in our area.”

Nominated by Vivian Nichols