Kathy Bottom began her VA Volunteer career more than 21 years ago and serves as a VA Voluntary Service (VAVS) representative for the American Legion Auxiliary, the treasurer for the VAVS Executive Committee, and as a volunteer driver — logging more than 6,000 hours of service as well as 100,000 miles behind the wheel.
Kathy volunteers at the Robley Rex VA Medical Center as a driver for the Volunteer Transportation Network. She transports Veterans from all over the metro Louisville area to and from medical appointments at the VA Medical Center and our Community Based Outpatient Clinics. She faithfully drives every week and often fills in when other drivers are not available or there is a difficult patient.
In addition these assignments, Kathy regularly assists with special programs and projects. For the past three Christmas seasons, she has taken responsibility for the management of our Homeless Veteran Christmas Program, putting in full weeks to organize lists and gifts so that as many as 160 Veterans in our community homeless shelters have a new set of clothing for Christmas. She also organizes and wraps gifts for adopted Veterans’ families.
Kathy volunteers with Stand Down for the Homeless. She assists Voluntary Service staff with sorting items, stuffing backpacks with clothing and hygiene kits as well as volunteering to hand out the items at the event.
These are just a few of the ways that Kathy Bottom lives, breathes and gives her all to patient centered care for Veterans. She exemplifies the “I CARE” spirit we all strive to accomplish each moment at Robley Rex Medical Center. Kathy does not stop at her service here, but also assists Veterans and other members of her community by taking them shopping, to medical appointments and other errands. She has even taken them out of town to ensure they received the specialty care that they needed. She donates platelets twice monthly and regularly donates food and clothing to those in need.
While Kathy is not a Veteran, both of her parents were. She works tirelessly to give back to those who have served our country. She does so very quietly and without expectation of recognition or reward.
Rhonda L. Parero, CAVS, is a Voluntary Service specialist at the Robley Rex VA Medical Center in Louisville, Kentucky and U.S. Army Veteran. In addition to her routine volunteer and donation management duties, she coordinates special projects and events that honor and benefit Veterans and serves on a variety of committees and work groups in the community that focus on serving Veterans.