'Angel in human form': Karrie Schum wins Daisy Award

Karrie Schum works nights and weekends. A registered nurse at Driscoll Children's Hospital critical care unit, she is no stranger to leaping into action when emergencies arise. On this evening, it was to deliver compassion.

“This was her only little boy, and she was just terrified,” Schum said, recalling the mom.

While visiting the Valley, the little boy had suffered a severe asthma attack— his worst yet. He was intubated and airlifted to Driscoll Children’s Hospital with mom.

Noticing that mom was distressed and in shock, Schum quickly went to work explaining everything that was going on around her; the monitors with numbers, the various medicines and equipment used to treat the small child.

It was instinct, Schum said. As a mother herself, she said she knows just how terrifying the unknown can be.

“You know it looks like torture devices, but it’s not,” Schum said, imagining the perspective to those outside of medicine.

As the unconscious and intubated child was treated, Schum brought him white music to listen to and promised mom that the little boy wouldn’t remember a thing.

For her work, Schum was recognized with a Daisy Award, a national award for nurses that go above and beyond.

“She is like an angel in human form,” the mom wrote of Schum, praising her for keeping her anxiety low.

“As a stressed-out single mother, this was a very sensitive period,” she said. “Thank you, Karrie, for coming to work because your heart is in it, and you treat children like they are your own. Thank you for not just coming to make money but for coming and leaving a positive impact on families. May you continue to have the heart, strength, and motivation to continue touching people's lives."

Schum said it feels wonderful to win a Daisy Award.

“I’m sure a lot of people say this, but it feels like I was just doing my job, that was just another day,” Schum said. “It feels wonderful that somebody recognized what nurses do every day.”

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