The 2018 North Carolina Azalea Festival Queen’s court, including Miss North Carolina Victoria Huggins and 2018 Azalea Festival Princess Grace Tippett, made their annual visit Thursday to visit patients at New Hanover Regional Medical Center.
The group, which included several Azalea Festival celebrities and Festival President Justin Wolfe, toured the Betty H. Cameron Women’s & Children’s Hospital, Nunnelee Pediatric Specialty Clinics and the NHRMC Rehabilitation Hospital. Patients were delighted to meet the queens and their escorts, and several asked for photos to be taken.
One patient in particular, Deb Sammons, received a special surprise visit from the Court organized by hospital staff. Dubbed the “Queen of the Seventh Floor,” Deb has been a patient at NHRMC for a year and relies on a ventilator. In an effort to lift her spirits, nursing staff of NHRMC have done their best to make her feel comfortable and special.
“My team always makes sure to help her do her nails or toenails with cute polish colors,” said PCU Manager Christine Webb.
“They love to stop by her room to say hi, even if not caring for her directly. Deb gets mad when her favorites are too busy to come and see her.”
Several members of the Court took the elevator up to the seventh floor and surprised Deb with a coronation ceremony in which Miss North Carolina placed her own crown on Deb’s head.
The 71st annual N.C. Azalea Festival will continue through Sunday with concerts, events, a parade, street fair and fireworks.