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Phoebe Posthumously Honors Outstanding Critical Care Nurse

Albany, GA | September 12, 2022 – In an emotional ceremony in the waiting area just outside one of the intensive care units at Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital, the family of Taylor Delk recently accepted a DAISY Award in his honor. Taylor, a devoted critical care nurse who died unexpectedly in July, became the first Phoebe nurse to receive the prestigious award posthumously.

“He loved his family, and he loved his patients,” Taylor’s widow, Heather, said. She, the couple’s sons – 2-year-old Fischer and 1-year-old Noah – Taylor’s parents and other loved ones were joined at the ceremony by a large group of critical care team members who loved and respected Taylor.

“His job meant everything. He was the best nurse and caretaker. I just wish he was here to accept it (the DAISY Award). It would have meant the world to him,” Heather said.

Taylor decided to focus on the care of critically ill cardiac patients after one of his sons was diagnosed with a cardiac condition, and he was known for his relentless work ethic and uncommon compassion for his patients.

“Taylor will always be the example of how to be a professional, friendly, intelligent and empathetic provider in the ICU,” wrote one physician in his DAISY Award nomination for Taylor. “Taylor’s legacy will live on within each of us as we continue to care for our patients. All others should strive for the excellence that Taylor delivered every day,” he added.

Several other colleagues on the critical care team also submitted nominations with comments that included:

“He is the perfect example of a patient’s advocate.”

“Taylor served his patients and their families with caring and respect.”

“He would never say ‘no’ to helping others and would always try to have funny moments with everyone.”

Taylor’s wife said each patient was important to him, and he treated them all as if they were his own family. “He loved to help people and serve people, but he talked about how hard it was because so many people who get to the point where they need intensive care don’t make it. He would cry about it when he would lose a patient. He loved his job,” Heather said.

The not-for-profit DAISY Foundation is based in Glen Ellen, CA, and was established by family members in memory of J. Patrick Barnes. Patrick died at the age of 33 in late 1999 from complications of Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura (ITP), a little known but not uncommon auto-immune disease. The care Patrick and his family received from nurses while he was ill inspired this unique means of thanking nurses for making a profound difference in the lives of their patients and patient families.

Honorees receive a certificate commending them for being an "Extraordinary Nurse." They are also given a beautiful and meaningful sculpture called A Healer’s Touch, hand-carved by artists of the Shona Tribe in Africa. Taylor’s family accepted both in his memory.

Patients or family members who would like to recognize a Phoebe nurse for outstanding care and service may nominate them for a DAISY Award on Phoebe’s website at

Photos: A group shot of Taylor’s family with his critical care colleagues, a memorial table with Taylor Delk’s photo at the DAISY Award presentation, PPMH Chief Nursing Officer Dr. Evelyn Olenick presenting Heather Delk with the DAISY Award.