It has been a year and a half since Ginger Sullivan’s coworker and friend lost her life to cancer, but Sullivan’s voice still breaks as she struggles to keep composure when she talks about it.
“We lost a very special person who worked with us. This was her season. She emulated the spirit of giving throughout the year,” says Sullivan, who works as a dental receptionist at Dental Health Professionals in Methuen, and who asked that her friend remain unnamed in this story out of respect to her family.
“She was here in the office and in my life for a long time,” Sullivan says of the woman who was not just a coworker, but a close friend and “a very special lady.”
“She just went above and beyond for everybody. Our patients just loved her,” Sullivan says.
And she loved the patients, too, often doing things like grocery shopping for elderly people who needed the extra help.
“She loved Christmas. She loved life. She loved people,” Sullivan remembers. “She was always doing for others. She always put herself last and everybody else first.”
That’s why when the first Christmas after she died rolled around, her coworkers decided to do something special in her honor: Donate to the Santa Fund.
“We all missed her so very much,” Sullivan says. “We usually do an office grab, and instead of doing that we decided to take the money we would spend on gifts (and) give that money to the Santa Fund in her name.”
Sullivan still misses her friend, but has years of memories of working together that she cherishes.
“She had the best giggle ever. She would just light up a room. I never saw her in anything but a fantastic mood,” Sullivan says. “Patients came in and she lit up their life. There was just nothing but joy around that girl, nothing but joy.”
Sullivan says her friend would be so happy to know that her colleagues are donating money to the Santa Fund in her honor. And like last year, the people from Dental Health Professionals will again donate in their friend’s name.
“We will always do this,” Sullivan says. “This is just from us, for our special girl.”