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All-star volunteer Chris Linkous logs 40,000 hours at St. Joseph's Women's Hospital in Tampa

Volunteers are needed all over Tampa Bay
Chris Linkous
Posted at 5:23 AM, Apr 26, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-26 08:04:34-04

TAMPA, Fla. — Chris Linkous keeps her age a secret.

But that's okay because she's happy to reveal a far more impressive number — 40,000.

As in, 40,000 hours that she's volunteered at St. Joseph's Women's Hospital in Tampa.

"I agree with Betty White," said this stalwart in the hospital's gift shop. "Everybody needs to have a passion. And this is my passion."

Linkous has been a baby cuddler at the hospital, too, even knitting caps, booties and blankets.

She started volunteering in 1994 after being a schoolteacher and helping run her husband's veterinary practice.

"Helping people is her passion," said her manager, Devon Polo.

Linkous is now the queen of the gift shop, where proceeds go to helping patients.

"This is a fun, happy place to be most of the time, and when it's not, that's a need as well," said Linkous.

Forty-thousands is a lot of volunteer hours; that's more than four and a half consecutive years.

And yet, every one of those hours is desperately needed, especially these days.

Volunteerism is down all over Tampa Bay, as a result of the pandemic.

If you're interested in volunteering, "we will find a place for you," said Karen Telfer, director of volunteer resources.

You might even get to work alongside Linkous, the 40,000-hour marvel.

"We all have that passion to help," she said.

For more information on volunteering at a Baycare hospital, click here.