Jean Evans commenced working at the Gawler Hutchinson Hospital in 1942 at the height of Australia’s involvement in WW2.
‘I can remember leaving Victor with all my life possessions. I came up on the train … got to Adelaide … then caught the train up here to Gawler Station. Old Mr Allwood used to be the local taxi driver. I got off the train and there was this little short fat man with a felt hat. He came up to me and he said; “Are you the new nurse for the hospital?” I said; “yes”, and he said; “Come with me” ‘
And so began Jean’s long, interesting, funny, at times sad, and valued career as a nurse … much of it centred around “The Hutch”. Listen to her joyful tales and recollections of American and Australian servicemen, the first use of penicillin, babies everywhere, living in Ayres House, dances in Gawler, losing the radium syringe, and “hats, gloves and handbags”.
Judy Gillett-Ferguson interviewed Jean in August 2018 as part of the Gawler Oral History’s project on the Hutchinson Hospital. If you know of anyone else who would like to contribute their story please contact us.