CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Think back to that cold week in February. Many probably freezing and scared. Now think of an entire elderly community going through that, unable to get help on their own. Fortunately, one of their own was there to help.
Polly Brandley, a resident of Cimmaron Estates stepped up to care for her fellow residents during the week of the winter storms. She’s been honored with a Certificate of Devotion from Devoted Healthcare and Hospice Services.
"I just never dreamed something like this would ever happen because I've done this all my life," Brandley said. "I didn't do it for recognition."
"Mom has been dedicated to this for over 40 years, whether it’s the hospital or giving care," Polly's son Nathan said. "So, I'm very proud of her. I learned a lot from what it’s like to serve or want to be a servant."
"DPS just wants to thank you so much," Corporal James Hildreth of Department of Public Safety said. "Your devotion to the community, to your peers is an example of the DPS model... You’re everything that exemplifies what we believe in and we just wanted to thank you."
With a background in healthcare, Polly knew exactly what to do whether that’s helping the injured, getting food or being a friend. Just as the power first went out she was in the middle of helping a 95 year old man to bed.
"He was scared," she said. "Like a child he kept saying, I'm scared, I'm scared.' And I said we’ll be OK we’ve done this before."
She wrapped the man up to keep him warm before checking what other residents needed. The next day, she said she had a feeling to check on a woman across the complex. When she walked into the woman's room she didn't see her.
“And about that time she said, ‘I knew God would send you to me Polly,’ said Polly. "She was on the floor right in front of me. Her feet were in the bathroom and she’d hit her head on the frame of the bathroom door.”
When water pressure was returned to the building it caused the pipes to burst. As the plumbing gets repaired at Cimmaron, we learned many people needed to find temporary homes. Cimmaron helped some, others went with family. Polly was invited to live with the family of one of the elderly men she cares for. She continues caring for the man today.
Now away from all the residents she used to tend to, she can't help but think about them.
“I was going to be concerned about all these people," she said. "So, I keep going back, getting the people’s mail, taking it to them, checking on them. For the lady…I go out to the base and get her medicine.”