Texas RN celebrates 50 years of nursing at UT Health

Charles Beene, RN, recently celebrated a milestone anniversary — working as a nurse at University of Texas Health for 50 years.

The 77-year-old has worked most of his career at UT Health Tyler, save four years at another UT Health location. Since 1985, Mr. Beene has served as UT Health Tyler's orthopedic coordinator, ensuring rooms have the proper materials and equipment for surgery.

After serving as an operating room technician in the Army, Mr. Beene graduated from the Texas Eastern School of Nursing in 1971 — one of the first male graduates. He then started at the Tyler hospital.

"When I first started, everything was done by hand," Mr. Beene said. "Now we've got the robot and we're doing total knee and total hip replacements."

The nurse said one of the most rewarding parts of his job is being looked up to by peers for the knowledge he's gained.

"From my first day, Charlie was an amazing resource," said Jessica Bunton, RN, main operating room charge nurse, who said she has worked with Mr. Beene her entire career. "Everyone in the OR loves Charlie. He is always the first to lend a hand to anyone who needs it, and I rely on him greatly throughout the day." 

"I still feel like I can do my job, and as long as I can do my job, I'll work," Mr. Beene said.  

"Charlie Beene takes pride in his job, and he goes above and beyond to make sure the orthopedic surgeons have what they need," said Tania Garcia, perianesthesia manager. "He is self-motivated and requires no supervision. You can always count on Charlie — we sure have for 50 years."

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