By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Immigrant shares her joy of being in USA
Amy-DHM-DSC 4815
Pink clad hospital auxiliary volunteer Amy Conklin once again made her July Fourth rounds Thursday morning with her infectious smile and hand- made gifts for all the patients at Doctors Hospital of Manteca. - photo by GLENN KAHL

Thailand born hospital auxiliary member Amy Conklin has been making an effort to deliver the spirit of the July 4th holiday to hospitalized patients at Doctors Hospital for the past five years with her special, patriotic hand-made mementos.

Working at the hospital every holiday and weekends, Conklin began her day Thursday greeting visitors and patients at the temporary lobby entrance to the emergency room, shagging wheel chairs for patients when needed and finally making the rounds of those bedded in their rooms with her gifts and spirited demeanor. 

Her last assignment of the day saw Amy heading down the hall to the obstetrics section of the hospital to take the official pictures of new babies in the maternity ward.

Small labels attached to her home-made red, white and blue stars and heart shaped pins read, “Happy 4th of July – Get Well Soon,” with a tag line of DHM Auxiliary – not her name.  But she is the one who spends her own money on the project for Christmas Day as well to dispel loneliness she perceives on the holidays.

“It’s a special thing for me,” she said.  “I usually bring my dad-in-law Larry Emittee with me to enjoy the spirit (of giving) but he passed away last month.”

She said Independence Day is very important to her having emigrated from Thailand.  Amy added that this Fourth of July is extra special for her hoping it will bring her personal dream of freedom and hope to fruition in bringing her 15-year-old Opal to the U.S. soon. 

“He has been waiting patiently for me to bring him here,” she said.  He is attending a boarding school in Thailand where he is an A-student, wanting to study computer programming in college.

Amy contacted her son via Skype Thursday morning, which was the highlight of her day.  He called her and she called him back, she noted.  She hasn’t personally seen him in five years, but she will be traveling to her homeland in October to spend two weeks with her son for his birthday.

The rest of her day included going to Park View Cemetery to place flowers on her father-in-law’s grave site.  Later in the afternoon her husband was barbecuing the holiday meal at their home to celebrate.