Husband Quits Jobs to Become Nurse Following His Wife’s Death from Breast Cancer
"I want to be that nurse that the family can depend on, the patient can depend on, going the extra mile, which a lot of the nurses did for Jill."
The past two years have been difficult for Bart Conley. The 44-year-old recently admitted to Hoda Kotb on Today that he used to struggle just to get out of bed after losing his wife Jill to breast cancer in 2016 at the age of 38. She was diagnosed just six months into their marriage.
Now, it's a new job and a mission to keep his wife's memory alive that keeps him going.
Jill, who made headlines a few years ago for a stunning Paris photo shoot that proved even cancer patients can be beautiful, was a vibrant force, one who lit up every room she entered. She was also the inspiration for Jill's Wish, the foundation the Conleys created to help ease the financial burden on the families of breast cancer patients.
But her death left Bart searching for purpose in life. Two years later, he told Kotb that he has finally found it.
Bart has left his successful career in business behind and began training to be a nurse at Norton Women's and Children's Hospital in Louisville, Kentucky—the couple's hometown.
"We had just a wonderful staff of nurses that always took care of her,'' he told Today this week. "I want to be that nurse that the family can depend on, the patient can depend on, going the extra mile, which a lot of the nurses did for Jill."
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Between his new job and his charity work with Jill's Wish, Bart is determined to make sure his beloved wife lives on.
"I try to deal with it better as time goes on,'' Bart said. "But I do love her, and I always think about her. She was amazing."