ANGELS OF DEATH: THE FEMALE NURSES
Yet anyone who knew Jones was not altogether surprised. She could be inordinately aggressive, had betrayed many friends, and often resorted to lies to manipulate others. While she'd wanted children all her life, the two she had she'd left in the care of her adoptive mother.
Some believe that it was the accidental death of her fourteen-year-old brother that had worked on her when she was young; others that it was her adoptive father's death from cancer. It may have been that she was ungainly, unattractive, and desperately needy, and had learned how to get attention by lying. At any rate, she was reportedly voracious in her desire for the spotlight and for sexual liaisons, even if it cost her friends. She had married young and was immediately unfaithful.
Jones had reserved her special ardor for doctors, seeing them as mysterious and powerful. She wanted to get near them, so she eventually left her job as a beautician and trained for a year to become a vocational nurse. It looked like she would do very well, although she was not altogether happy about being on the bottom of the medical totem pole.
After only eight months after her first job, she was fired, in part because she made judgments in areas where she had no authority, and in part because she mistreated a patient, who subsequently complained. She didn't last long in her next job, but soon she was hired in the intensive care section of the pediatric unit of Bexar County Medical Center Hospital. It was here that she would leave her mark, and co-workers saw right away that Jones was unusual.
The first child she picked up had a fatal intestinal condition, and when he died shortly thereafter, she went berserk. She brought a stool into the cubicle where the body lay and sat staring at it.
It became clear to associates that Jones liked to feel needed and would often spend long hours on the ward, insisting it was important to a patient. However, she skipped classes on the proper handling of drugs and made several medication errors. While there were sufficient grounds for dismissal several times over, the head nurse protected her, which gave Jones a feeling of invincibility. She never liked to admit to any mistakes, and now she had someone in power to back her up. She tried to bully new nurses into looking to her for help.