Gritman’s Sweethearts

Jeff and Carol Breed Share a 42-Year Love Story

Carol Breed has many favorite memories over the course of her 42-year marriage to her husband Jeff.

Jeff and carol, both employees at gritman medical center, have been married for 42 years.

Jeff and Carol, both employees at Gritman Medical Center, have been married for 42 years.

“We’ve had so many good times with our kids, both as littles and now adults. We’ve gone fun places and made fun out of the ordinary,” she said. “We’ve also done some really difficult things in our life together and my favorite thing might be that at the end of every day, good or bad, we’ve done it together.”

Jeff and Carol, both longtime employees of Gritman Medical Center, started out as high school sweethearts.

“We were in an interdenominational Christian youth choir,” she remembers. “He asked me to a winter prom when I was 14, we became very good friends, and married five years later.”

Their admiration for each over the past 42 years has been limitless. “Where do I start?” Jeff said of Carol. “Her love, care and concern for her family, co-workers, patients and friends. Her wisdom. Her grace and patience with me.”

One of Jeff’s many favorite memories from his life with Carol is sharing in the birth of their four children.

Carol admires Jeff’s kindness and thoughtfulness. “He is a faithful friend; a faithful husband; a faithful father,” she said.

For the couple, Gritman Medical Center has not only been where all four of their children were born, but it’s where their careers have led them to an almost 50 years of combined service.

“We’ve had so many good times with our kids, both as littles and now adults. We’ve gone fun places and made fun out of the ordinary. We’ve also done some really difficult things in our life together and my favorite thing might be that at the end of every day, good or bad, we’ve done it together.” – Carol Breed 

Carol has been part of the Gritman Family since 1991, when she was officially hired by the hospital after having taught childbirth preparation classes for a year prior. In 1998 while still teaching classes, Carol started working as a CNA in Gritman’s Family Birth Center. She became a Registered Nurse in 2013 and continues to work within the same department. She stopped teaching childbirth preparation classes in 2010.

“I love babies and families. I love that I am afforded the privilege of being a part of one of life’s most intimate moments. I am inspired and challenged by my patients, never underestimate what a mother has the power to do for her child,” she said. “I also really love and treasure my co-workers. I’m grateful to be part of their lives.”

It was an initial opportunity that prompted Carol to start working at Gritman, which she still considers “a really good place to work.”

“I’ve appreciated the culture of ‘family’ that is cultivated at Gritman,” she said. “I’ve had great leaders and co-workers. Every organization has rough patches but I’m a believer that the grass is greenest where you water it.”

Jeff has been in his position at the hospital as a Picture Archiving and Communication System (PACS) Administrator for 16 years. He describes his role as being the Information Technology Department for Diagnostic Imaging at Gritman Medical Center. As a PACS Administrator, Jeff enjoys being able to work with both technology and people.

“I was looking for work when my IT job with a local bank was requiring a move to Spokane. I knew from Carol how great a place Gritman was to work,” he said. “The PACS position was new to Gritman and that intrigued me. So, when I was offered the job, I thought I will try it for a while and here I am 16 years later.”

Working at the same organization has allowed Jeff and Carol to share in little moments throughout the day while providing each with a deeper understanding of different aspects of the hospital.

“It’s nice that we can share notes about our workday from different perspectives,” Jeff said. “I also love the opportunity to visit her and her wonderful co-workers down in FBC.”

“He drives me to work and drops me off at the door – checks in with me occasionally during the day – I’m pretty fond of him so I like having him in the same building,” she said. “Us working in different areas of the same organization gives me a broader perspective on the organization as a whole.”

In addition to Jeff and Carol being a part of the Gritman Family, their daughter Danielle currently serves as the Administrative Chief of Staff for the hospital. She has held administrative and executive assistant roles within the organization for more than 12 years.

“My parents’ love for one another is something I have always been able to trust, just as I know the sun will always rise and always set,” Danielle said. “My parents are entirely committed to one another and always put each other first. No matter what difficult situations they have faced, they are steadfast and grounded in their love for one another.”

Carol’s advice this Valentine’s Day is to celebrate apart from the big day. “Valentine’s Day is a great day set apart to celebrate ‘love,’ and celebrate you should. My advice is to make your own Valentine’s Day for your love, when no one tells you to, or tells you how it should be.”

Jeff shares in the same sentiment, “My advice is treat each other like every day is Valentine’s Day. If you are saving love and romance for one day, then you are missing out.”

Thank you, Jeff and Carol, for encouraging us to celebrate love every day on this Valentine’s Day.

Pictured at Top: Gritman Medical Center employees Jeff and Carol Breed share their 42-year love story and appreciation for the hospital.