Fond farewell: Retiring Queenstown radiographer Lis Key, second from right, with some of her team, from left, Maggie Eden, Megan Nicoll, Nick Doran and Erica Barrett

Four decades after starting work at Frankton’s Lakes District Hospital (LDH), Lis Key is handing back her fob.

Key, 67, LDH’s charge radiographer, joined the hospital in May, 1982, and will officially sign off today.

As to what’s kept her going this long, Key says it’s largely due to her love of meeting people.

“Queenstown’s patients tend to be different from your day-to-day New Zealanders; you have people from all walks of life, from all around the world.

“In radiology, it’s a lot quieter and more one-on-one than other parts of the hospital, so when you empathise with people, you can find them telling you their life story.

‘‘Often you get people on their bucket-list trip they have saved up for, and they get here, are miles away from home, don’t know anyone else and you just want to help.’’

During her time she’s seen almost everything, including a businessman who answered his phone eight times during an x-ray, a patient with a bullet in their head, and a local vet attempting to put his animals through the machine.

Key’s celebrating her retirement with her colleagues today, after which she’s looking forward to pottering around her house, tending her garden and attending her son’s wedding later this year.

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