12 Inspiring Nanny Stories of 2012

By the end of 2012, the nanny news story that had received the most media exposure was the tragic tale of the Krim children, who were stabbed by their nanny before she turned the knife on herself. Parents around the nation mourned alongside the Krim family, and counted their blessings not to be in their shoes. There were, however, far more stories of courage and inspiration to be found that didn’t receive the same sensational attention of this grisly tale. These 12 nannies were among those to be celebrated, even if their stories didn’t receive national coverage.

  1. Emily Rogers – When Emily Rogers learned CPR in order to take a nanny job, she likely never realized that the skills she attained in order to ensure the safety of her charges would one day save a life. Jorge Pedroso was turning blue when Rogers and a bystander, Rebekah Tucker, began the CPR that helped him to survive.
  2. Kaitlyn McGrath – Chris Powell may be the celebrity trainer of Extreme Makeover Weight Loss Edition, but the courage of his nanny Kaitlyn McGrath saved his one-year-old son from a carjacker. McGrath escaped her work vehicle with little Cash before anyone was injured.
  3. Susane Lavinia Bowden – Great nannies become more like members of the family than employees, a fact that’s proven by the tale of Susane Lavinia Bowden. For 40 years she served as a live-in nanny and housekeeper to the Hoare family; now, as she celebrates her 100th birthday, her years of service and dedication are being rewarded as her employers care for her.
  4. Michael Kenny – Norland College is a renowned British institution for the training of nannies, and was established more than a century ago. Over the decades, Norland has exclusively trained women. Michael Kenny, the first male to be admitted to the school, set a new precedent for breaking down traditional gender roles.
  5. Nikki Gribble – Each year, the International Nanny Association chooses one nanny to receive the honor of Nanny of the Year. This year’s recipient, Nikki Gribble, was nominated by her employers for her dedication and excellent professional performance.
  6. Cindy Gatson – When a stolen Jeep careened towards Cindy Gatson and her four-year-old charge, she risked her own life to save him. Gatson was clipped by the Jeep’s bumper and was forced to use crutches until she recovered, but her charge escaped the situation unscathed.
  7. Vivian Maier – Chicago nanny Vivian Maier might not have received any attention from the media during her 40 years on the job, but she became something of an enigmatic figure of interest after a book full of her photographs was posthumously published.
  8. Alexis Barry – She may not be an inspiring figure for nanny employers, but Alexis Barry’s courage in standing up to her A-list employer Robert DeNiro demanding fair payment for more than $40,000 in withheld overtime pay definitely makes her a hero to nannies struggling with job creep and unfair pay.
  9. Alyson Myatt – When the Kentucky home of single parent J.B. Hawes caught fire while he was away on business, his 22-year-old nanny rushed barefoot through soaring flames to save her five-year-old charge Aden. While Myatt suffered serious burns, Aden escaped unharmed. Local authorities assert that any hesitation on Myatt’s part would have resulted in Aden’s death.
  10. Nosrat Dezfoulian – When a metal roll-down gate collapsed in the Park Slope neighborhood of Brooklyn onto Nosrat Dezfoulian and the toddler she was caring for, she shielded him with her body to the best of her ability. Her head was split open and bleeding profusely, but her charge escaped with only a broken leg due to her quick thinking.
  11. Jennifer Anton – The driver of a Chicago Streets and Sanitation truck was clutching an open bottle of brandy and had a blood-alcohol level of more than twice the legal limit when he sped towards Jennifer Anton and her 20 month old charge Tyler. Tyler sustained no serious injuries, but Anton’s legs and pelvis were shattered.
  12. Sandra Samuel – The terrorist attack on Chabad House Jewish Community Center in Mumbai left only two survivors, two-year-old Moshe and his nanny Sandra Samuels. Samuels carried Moshe to safety after rescuing him from between the bodies of his parents, risking her own life in the process.

These 12 nannies showed themselves to be truly outstanding members of not only the professional childcare community, but also the world as a whole. In some way or another, they all showed great courage and strength, proving that great nannies far outnumber dangerous ones.