February 10, 2022
HAMILTON TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–Annie Elizabeth Lema Lewis Merrick was possibly drawn to Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital (RWJUH) Hamilton, an RWJBarnabas facility, by fate. Born in Hamilton, Bermuda, Annie moved to Hamilton Square, NJ at 18 years old with her husband at the time where they started their family. And as fate would have it, she then began her long and wonderful career with RWJUH Hamilton at what was then called Hamilton Hospital.
Annie Merrick, a member of the hospital’s Environmental Services team, started at RWJUH Hamilton part-time in environmental services back in 1972. She recalls years ago the hospital was only one floor, served about 30 patients, and the emergency department was one room with the beds lined up in a circle. Annie, who is turning 80 years old on June 29th of this year, says her secret to her longevity of service was because of the people she worked with. Everyone gets along with everyone. The staff was like family, and the hospital was her second home. “There are lots of good people here, and I am going to miss them all,” said Annie.
A healthcare hero, Annie knows that by being a part of the team at the hospital she has contributed to the facility’s overall quality care and service and touched the lives of many people in the Hamilton community who have walked through the doors of the institution.
Annie was honored at a luncheon on campus where colleagues wrote personal messages of good luck and shared stories about working together. At the luncheon, Richard Freeman, President & CEO of RWJUH Hamilton, presented her with a special membership to RWJ Fitness & Wellness Center where Annie is looking forward to swimming in the pool.
One memorable moment for Annie in her 50 years at the hospital was when actor and producer Christian Slater came by to visit a patient about 10 years ago.
The first thing Annie plans to do in her retirement is visit her hometown of Hamilton, Bermuda where she has not been back to visit in eight years.