Community says goodbye to Christine Kew
|By Alex Coop - Staff Writer | June 1, 2017|
Even as people piled into Christine Kew’s office to celebrate her time with the Minden Haliburton Hearing Service, she managed to complete a bit of work on her computer.
“I just have one last report to finish,” she told everyone.
Shortly after, Kew, who is leaving for Newfoundland this week with her husband Steve, cut a cake with the words “Good luck Christine” written in icing.
Friends, family and clients swarmed the clinic May 26. Hugs were given, tears were held back and the cake eventually disappeared.
Past clients Katherine and Parry Morrison and Eleanor Cooper were the first to arrive.
“She’s wonderful, and funny,” Cooper said. “She really understands her patients.”
Kew has been with the hearing clinic for five years and has seen hundreds of patients.
Her ability to relate with clients – Kew has a hearing aid – is a big reason why patients visited her in droves.
“They like the way I program them [hearing aids],” she said. “And I think they like me for my humour, too.”
While getting outfitted for a hearing aid or simply getting a hearing test, patients often shared stories with Kew. A close friendship was usually formed.
“She is extremely friendly,” said Morrison, who had visited the clinic previously for hearing tests.
Kew was also dedicated.
She drove from Kirkfield, where she currently lives, every morning to Haliburton for work.
The one-hour drive was something she always looked forward to.
“It’s like I was driving to the cottage every morning,” Kew said. “I loved coming to work.”
Kew plans to continue her work in Newfoundland, where her family owns property.
She is already expecting friends and family from Haliburton to visit.
Kathryn Kidd, the clinic’s public relations coordinator, recalled how Kew first came to the clinic to finish her placement hours and get her degree from university.
Kew caught on quickly and was integrated into business shortly after.
“She was herself at work … her ability to relate to clients’ issues was amazing. We’re going to miss her terribly,” Kidd said.
There won’t be a hearing specialist replacing Kew, she added.
Heather Sedjurick of Haliburton, who has a background in personal care, has stepped in to fill additional administrative duties.
ALEX COOP is a reporter for The Highlander.