By TYLER MASK
“... faith without works is dead,” James 2:26b (NET). Palo Pinto General Hospital Emergency Room Director James E. Fesser, RN, puts his faith to work everyday.
Growing up, Fesser was raised primarily by his single mother. His mother worked as a checker at Safe Way, back when Safe Ways were still in Texas. Fesser recalls that she worked very hard at what she did, nonetheless, they faced many hardships.
“Most of the time growing up, finances were very tight, and we lived very lean,” Fesser said. “Paycheck to paycheck. I remember, we were kind of the working poor. I grew up in Burleson. There was my mother, myself, and [my] little brother. We used food stamps [and] lived in government-assisted housing.
“She did the best she could and she worked hard, [but] I knew that working hard wasn’t going to be enough. I knew I had to make certain sacrifices to better myself. And the medical field at that time when I graduated in 1988, it seemed to be a safe haven economically. There was a nursing shortage at the time, but all things medical seemed to be a good direction to go.”
Fesser’s desire to better himself quickly became something bigger than he imagined. He began to see a lot of extreme poverty and need during his education and when he first became an Emergency Medical Technician.
“Either as a paramedic or an ER nurse, you start to see a lot of issues that any particular community faces,” Fesser said. “So that touched my heart.”
However, even this is not Fesser’s biggest motivator anymore.
“The biggest change in my life occurred as a result of finding God, Fesser said. “I believe that we’re called to be salt and light. And this profession allows me to do that every day. So there is my main motivation.”