Kansas City nurse wins essay contest, gets Zoom meeting with Michael Bublé

By Alan Shope

    KANSAS CITY, Missouri (KMBC) -- There is no doubt being a health care worker can be an extremely difficult job right now. When one University Health nurse put pen to paper, she had no idea her words would attract international attention and an international celebrity.

"I used to compete in high school in speech competitions," said Monette Chiarolanza, a nurse at University Health.

Her passion is her co-workers during the pandemic the last two years. She recently wrote an essay on her job and the teamwork of the staff and entered it into a national competition on a nursing app. Chiarolanza's essay won.

"They contacted me and said, 'We cried when we read your essay.' They were like, 'We were in tears,'" she said.

"This is tough work when we go up on the floors and we talk to the nurses and particularly the nurses in the ICU dealing with some very challenging cases that frankly don't always have a good outcome," said Charlie Shields, president and CEO of University Health.

It was an emotional essay about her job that got noticed. She also got a Zoom meeting with singer Michael Bublé.

"I thank you on behalf of every human being who you've rescued and helped. Every person who has gone through tough times and is going to go through tough times. Your selflessness changed the world. It really does. You inspire us to be better people," Bublé said.

"The surprise that he took the time to come and congratulate us but even more so, so down to earth," Chiarolanza said. "It picks you up. It kind of lifts you at a time when it can be hard."

Chiarolanza said she has not seen Bublé in concert but added that if he ever makes it back to Kansas City, she will be front and center at the show.

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