The matriarch of the Landstuhl Regional Medical Center Pharmacy has concluded 47 years of selfless service for which she received the Meritorious Civilian Service Award.
It began when Ruth Schirra showed up for work April 4, 1966, at the LRMC Dental Clinic as a dental assistant. If you planted an apple tree on that date, by now it would have yielded 4,194 kilograms of apples while contributing $16,729 toward the economy and feeding 7,035 people. Schirra has been equally fruitful.
After her stint as a dental assistant, Schirra worked in the LRMC Data Processing Branch and Medical Research Department before settling in the LRMC Nuclear Medicine Department from 1969 to 1993 as the administrative assistant, a position that has since been converted to into three different positions.
Finally, in March 1993, Schirra found her true home in the Department of Pharmacy as the administrative assistant to the chief of pharmacy. Over the past 18 years, Schirra was the backbone of the Department of Pharmacy where she mentored and watched six different chiefs of pharmacy and hundreds of Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, civilians and local nationals pass through the doors of the pharmacy, adopting each and every person as one of her own.
“Frau Schirra quickly found the answer to almost any personnel question and assisted everyone with a wonderful caring attitude for 47 years,” said Lt. Col. Rodney Jorstad, director of the Department of Pharmacy, at the time of Schirra’s retirement. “She left us her extensive data files she developed over her career that we refer to constantly. Frau Schirra is still caring for us even after her retirement.”
Similar praise was bestowed upon Schirra by another former LRMC pharmacy director, retired Col. Curtis Hansen.
“In addition to being a remarkably effective administrative secretary for one of LRMC’s largest divisions, Frau Schirra’s reputation for personally assisting patients and fellow staff members throughout these many years is truly legendary. Quite simply, Frau Schirra was the heart of the LRMC Pharmacy,” Hansen said.
“I think back with gratitude, pride and tears in my eyes, however, with no regrets whatsoever,” Schirra said, reflecting on her career. “Now, a new era has started, and my devotion belongs to my family and to my too numerous to count projects. I miss all my friends at LRMC and the folks I have met throughout my 47 years working on the hill. I cherish every moment and am thankful forever.”