Nurse Rhonda Phillips retires from Ibis Aged Care Blakehurst, Miranda

Fond memories: Rhonda Phillips at her farewell. She is retiring after working for Ibis Aged Care Blakehurst and Miranda for 27 years. Pictures: Supplied

Fond memories: Rhonda Phillips at her farewell. She is retiring after working for Ibis Aged Care Blakehurst and Miranda for 27 years. Pictures: Supplied

Rhonda Phillips has worked at Ibis Aged Care Blakehurst and Miranda for 27 years, but now it is time to call it a day.

The 70-year-old Blakehurst resident said she would spend her retirement renovating her house, fixing up her garden, and spending more time with her family.

After starting off as Recreational Activities Officer, Mrs Phillips became a nurse and turned her hand to driving the Ibis bus, taking residents for weekly outings.

"I will miss the residents the most and I intend on popping in every so often," Mrs Phillips told the Leader.

"I'll also miss the bus outings. Before COVID we'd go on trips once a week. We'd go for a drive to the beach, down the coast, and we'd always end up at McDonald's having an ice cream no matter the weather."

I will miss the residents the most and I intend on popping in every so often.

Rhonda Phillips

Fellow Ibis worker Jay Richards said Mrs Phillips was well-known as "humble, caring and good natured".

"Rhonda endured several changes of ownership and management but persevered and chose to always put the residents first above all other barriers or challenges," he said.

Mrs Phillips said she began work at Ibis Blakehurst when she and her young family moved into a house around the corner.

"My youngest son was six then and my older children took him to school across the road. He's now 34," she said.

She said she was retiring because "I thought it was time".

"Once you turn 70 you're 80 before you know it and then you're 90. I'm not complaining about getting old, but I wanted to have more time to do stuff," she said.

Was it difficult saying goodbye to the residents?

"I got a bit teary but I was in control," she said.

She attended two farewells - one at Blakehurst and one at Miranda, where residents and employees reportedly spoke of her good nature and "she'll be right" attitude.