ETOWAH, Tenn. — When patients and visitors alike step through the doors of a hospital, they usually have one thing in common: they don't want to be there.
The gift shop is one of the few places you'll almost always see a smiling face. At Starr Regional Medical Center in Etowah and Athens that mission is all possible thanks to Sandra Liner.
"She is a true volunteer. A lover of people. She gives with no regrets. She doesn't even think about what she does, she just does it," said Priscilla Cornwall who nominated Sandra Liner for Pay it Forward.
Priscilla Cornwall is one of many who volunteer at these hospitals under Sandra's leadership. That's why she nominated her longtime friend Sandra to receive $500 from NewsChannel 9's partners at The McMahan Law Firm.
The Auxiliary affectionately known as the 'pink ladies' put in countless hours behind this counter to raise money for the hospital and nearby nursing home.
"During covid and our restrictions, we were not allowed to do our volunteer work. So, we had to close the gift shop and do our volunteer work at the nursing home. But Sandra was so good. She kept us together, she kept calling us. She was the glue that held us together and she still is," said Cornwall.
When Sandra completed her professional career in a chemical lab in 2008, she immediately started looking for ways to give back.
"I always said when I retired, I wanted to do volunteer work. So, I started with meals on wheels and one of the ladies there that delivered talked me into joining the auxiliary," said Sandra Liner, a Pay it Forward recipient.
The Auxiliary's gift shop sells things like greeting cards, candy and things just for fun, but sometimes shoppers just want to talk.
"We'd go over to the nursing home and do ice water, say 'hello' and put a smile on their face," said Liner.
Each member is required to work four hours a week. But Sandra doesn't stop there.
"I'm not going to tell you how many hours I put in. I don't count them all," said Liner.
Do you know someone who deserves $500 cash for helping others in need? Nominate them by clicking the link here!