Jill Shackleton and her daughter, Allie Summers

At Quincy Medical Group (QMG), dedication to patient care isn’t just a job, it’s a tradition that runs deep in the family of Jill Shackleton and her daughter, Allie Summers. For them, nursing is more than a profession; it’s a legacy passed down through generations.

Shackleton’s path to nursing wasn’t typical. After 11 years as a medical transcriptionist at QMG, the desire to directly care for patients never left her. Despite raising eight children, she pursued her dream of becoming a nurse, inspired by her own mother who was also a registered nurse (RN).

“I always wanted to be a nurse but was busy having children and did not think I could have little kids and go to school,” she shared. “After our eighth child was born, I remember sitting at the table and I said to Burt (my husband), ‘I want to go back to college and become a nurse.’”

With her family’s support, she enrolled in school that very week. She drew inspiration from her mom, who was also an RN, and raised eight children.

“She was also an older student who did well and succeeded. I knew becoming a nurse in my 40s was going to be challenging, but my husband stepped up, my older children jumped in to help, and I truly believe we all got the degree,” she said. “Without my family I would not have succeeded in nursing school as well as I did. I worked hard, was in honors, and graduated with my BSN from Quincy University/Blessing-Rieman College of Nursing.”

Inspired by her mother’s dedication, Summers, one of Shackleton’s eight children, decided to pursue nursing herself. Though already a mother with children of her own, Summers was struck by her mom’s passion and saw the joy it brought her.

“I could see that she was so happy being a nurse and getting to help people, so I decided to follow in her footsteps. She also told me all the time that I would be a great nurse,” Summers said.

Shackleton’s pride in Summers’s decision is evident. “When Allie decided to become a nurse, I was thrilled! I bought her first stethoscope, just like Mom did for me,” Shackleton said.

Summers, a mother of two with another child on the way, at the time, understood the challenges of juggling family and education. However, Shackleton’s example instilled confidence in her.

“I didn’t think that I had the time to go back to school to get my nursing degree. She gave me the confidence boost, encouragement and help that I needed to go back to school,” she said.

From her mother, Summers learned invaluable lessons—lessons that transcend nursing.

“Personally, and professionally, my mom has taught me to take a minute and take a step back and think before reacting or responding,” she said. “This has taught me to always look at the bigger picture and to think outside the box. I think that advice helps with raising my kids and with working with patients. She has taught me how to be compassionate and to always make sure everyone is taken care of.”

Summers began her career at QMG nine months ago, and loves working at the same place as her mom. She quickly learned that the admiration she had for her mom, was shared by her colleagues.

 

“She cares so much for all the patients that she sees. I hear from other nurses how great my mom is to work with and how they loved floating over to her office and working with her,” she said.

They both have no regrets, as their dreams were realized, and they get to live it out each day. Their shared passion for caring for others fuels them both.

“The best part of nursing is taking care of people,” Shackleton said. “I’m a caregiver by nature, and I look forward to coming to work every day.”

Summers echoed this sentiment, “I love getting to know my patients and celebrating their milestones. As a nurse, I know I’m making a difference.”

The tradition of nursing runs deep in their family.  In addition to Shackleton, Summers, and Shackleton’s mom, Shackleton’s sister and soon-to-be daughter-in-law are also nurses.

“Nursing has been a wonderful gift,” Shackleton concluded. “I’m incredibly proud of my profession and this legacy we’ve built together.”