To the Editor: Giving the ultimate gift

To the Editor: Giving the  ultimate gift  Ridgecrest Regional Hospital is honored and grateful to have received an affectionate gift through the will of Ardelle Marie (nee Miller) Mollerstuen, a former Pink Ladies Auxiliary volunteer. We received this generous gift from Ardelle with mixed feelings. We were sad to hear that we had lost a faithful member of our Pink Lady Auxiliary team, but there was a joy in knowing that a loving soul was now enjoying His presence, free from the troubles of this world.

And then there was this great sense of thankfulness to Ardelle for thinking of us, for extending her generosity to us and to those in the community we serve.

Her thoughtfulness and generosity have given life to the words, “Volunteers do not necessarily have the time, they have the heart.” For those who do not know about Ardelle, she was born in Johnstown, Pa., on May 14, 1923, where she was raised as the youngest of six siblings. During the Korean War she served in the United States Navy, where she met her future husband, Ralph, while he was a Navy medical officer in New Orleans, La. In 1985 the Mollerstuens moved to Ridgecrest where they enjoyed retirement until Dr. Mollerstuen’s passing in 1995.

In 1996 Ardelle joined the Pink Ladies Auxiliary, greeting the visitors to the gift shop and delivering newspapers to the patients. She is described by her colleagues as charming, kindhearted, generous and feisty. She absolutely loved serving people. The Pink Ladies Auxiliary was very important to her, and she considered the group to be her family.

“She was never known to take a day off and followed the rules to a T,”said one of her colleagues. Another colleague added, “She was famous for her cookies, we all looked forward to her fresh batch of cookies.”

Ardelle walked to the hospital, and when her health started to fail her, she made it a point to get a ride but not give up on her commitment to the Pink Ladies. She had been one of the most dedicated volunteers in the group. She did not have a family in Ridgecrest and this group gave her a sense of belonging and purpose.

The Tree of Life at the hospital was very important to her, and she dedicated a bunch of acorns in her husband’s memory.

It is these moments that reinforce the importance of a sense of community. The staff of Ridgecrest Regional Hospital thanks Ardelle for her love, support and generosity. We also thank all our volunteers and the Pink Ladies Auxiliary for offering us the gift of their time and commitment.

“We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.” – Winston Churchill

Nirzari Desai

marketing director, RRH

Pictured: Ardelle Mollerstuen

Story First Published: 2018-06-29