LAC+USC Medical Center has been overwhelmed by the outpouring of love and support received in the wake of Nurse Sandra Shells’ passing. In a recent statement, the center said that they are grateful to those who have paid tribute to Shells by extending their condolences, sending flower arrangements, and posting heartfelt messages on social media.
The medical center would like to celebrate Sandra’s life and honor her 38 years of service to the County of Los Angeles. In her honor, the center’s foundation has established the Sandra Shells Memorial Fund to help her family during this difficult time, and to assist other families who have been affected by, or have fallen victim to violence. Visit https://tinyurl.com/mr37j629. A memorial video is posted at https://vimeo.com /668825315/6956e901e6
Shells, 70, was known as “Sandy” by her emergency department family. She began her career as a registered nurse on Nov. 7, 1977 on the Diagnosis & Evaluation Unit – Ward 6300, at LAC+USC Medical Center’s Historic General Hospital. In 1990, she joined the Department of Emergency Medicine as a relief nurse, primarily working the day shift. It was said that even in her more recent years, Sandra could run circles around some of the 20-year-old’s. Over the years, Sandra trained many nurses and role modeled how to treat everyone with dignity and respect.
Shells will forever be remembered for one of her favorite phrases: “Come on now, stop playing. We have work to do.”
Shells made it a point to know everyone’s name, and even details about each person’s family. She loved Star Wars and found a common bond with many team members who referred to her as the Jedi Master. Although she had a car and could drive, Sandra preferred to ride the bus to work. As she was waiting to catch her bus on Jan. 13, a homeless man struck her in the face, causing her to fall and fracture her skull. She died from her injuries three days later.
The transient Kerry Bell was arrested on Jan. 13 in Shells’ death, and his bail is set at $2 million.