As 63-year-old Margaret Smith lay dying in Vanderbilt University Medical Center, nurse Olivia Neufelder tried to make some of her last moments on Earth as tranquil as possible.
Neufelder, who has been friends with Margaret for 15 years, sang “Dancing in the Sky” by Dani and Lizzie to the ailing woman confined to a hospital bed, according to WLOS.
Smith would later be moved from the Tennessee hospital to a nearby nursing home, where she died Wednesday, NewsChannel5 reported. She had been waiting for a liver transplant, which doctors said she wasn’t healthy enough to receive.
But before that, Neufelder wanted to share a few more minutes — and the calming power of music — with her old friend.
For hours, the nurse comforted Smith as her anesthesia began to wane, CBS reported.
“There was almost a sense of peace knowing that it was her favorite song and she did tell me it’s the song she wants played at her funeral,” Neufelder told NewsChannel 5. “She didn’t feel like a patient at that time. I wanted her to know that she was loved even if her family wasn’t able to be there.”
A friend of Smith’s captured the touching moment, which quickly went viral after it was posted to Facebook by Megan Smith, Margaret’s daughter.
Megan Smith wrote that, to her mother, Neufelder is an “angel.”
“This nurse sat with my mom for hours while the medicine from too much Anesthesia and sang a very special song to my sweet mother to comfort her,” Smith detailed on her post. “You never left her side by choice!! Words cannot describe the appreciation and love we feel for nurse Olivia who mom calls her angel!”
In the video, Neufelder can be seen tenderly caressing Smith’s hand and often wiping away tears. Smith, in turn, lies with her arms crossed, closing her eyes and occasionally looking up at the singing nurse.
Around 3.5 million people have watched that video, plus another 270,000 people who saw a different clip of the serene connection between nurse and patient.
Neufelder told Fox17 that she hoped the millions of people who watched the videos learned this: “There’s always hope, there’s always someone.”
“Miss Marg has touched my heart in such an indescribable way,” she wrote on Facebook. “I am so humbled and honored to be a Nurse. My thoughts and prayers are forever with this amazing family.”
‘You never left her side’: Video captures ‘angel’ nurse singing to dying patient – Sacramento Bee