Supply manager’s last orders filled

Selwyn Munro will miss his extended work family after retiring from the supply stores of Ashburton Hospital.

Selwyn Munro has indoor bowls to play and a garden to tend after retiring from his long-standing role working behind the scenes at Ashburton Hospital.

The supply stores manager has spent the past 47 years in the hospital’s stores, keeping wards fully stocked with all matter of medical supplies which keep the healthcare wheels turning.

It was a rewarding job and saw him connecting with not only staff of the Canterbury District Health Board (DHB) on a daily basis, but members of the public too.

“From day one I’ve been dealing with people in the community who come to get their supplies,” he said.

He considers those he has worked with in the hospital environment just like an extended family, where being adaptable to family needs was paramount.

He was also a long-standing member of the social club.

“I’m going to miss everything (about working), I’m going to miss the family,” he said, of his colleagues.

In the past three years the supply store has come under Canterbury Health Central Supply Department, and run through Christchurch.

Stocktake scans are done in the wards on a regular basis for reordering.

The supply store has a steady revolving flow of inwards and outwards goods on a daily basis.

Selwyn, 69, finished high school at Methven (now Mount Hutt College) in 1969 and took up a three month job at Hokitika Hospital.

He loved it and stayed for six months, then embarked on his own nurse training in 1970.

While it was not meant to be, Selwyn wasn’t swayed from other medical opportunities and joined the army as a member of the Royal New Zealand Army Medical Corps. It was a four year stint.

Newly married Selwyn then started as an orderly at Ashburton Hospital in 1974.

He then became a driver and the opportunity arose to become storeman.

It became a lifelong career.

Selwyn at his workstation in the supply store.

Selwyn’s late-parents, Ron and Dorothy Munro, spent time being cared for at Ashburton Hospital in their final years, which was bittersweet. His dad died on the ward.

Selwyn has two adult sons, Craig and Eric, of Rolleston and Lincoln respectively, and one grandchild.

His daughter-in-law Michelle, married to Craig, is a medical technician at Ashburton Hospital.

Nearing 70 years of age, Selwyn has opted to retire now.

Selwyn’s final day was March 25, ahead of the end of the financial year on March 31.

“I want to get out and enjoy life. You don’t know when your number is going to be up,” he said.

He has already had friends contact him for volunteer roles in the community.

But he is not committing to anything just yet.

Selwyn is keen to spend more time with wife, Olive, (also retired), spend time in the garden and play plenty of indoor bowls.

“I love me bowls,” he said.

He also loves gardening and is keen on tending his vegetable patch and a beautiful flower garden.