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Singing Custodian Spreads Cheer All Year Long

December 18, 2019

Bernard Williams is known around Craig Hospital for always having a smile on his face, no matter the weather, world news or job at hand. He shares his good cheer with employees and patients alike, through fist bumps, conversations—and even songs.

“There’s negative stuff in the world, but I try to block it out and stay positive. It keeps me from stressing,” says Bernard.

As an environmental services technician, Bernard has lots of duties from cleaning the floors, dusting, stocking supplies and filling in wherever he’s needed. The custodial team has 25 members, which he describes as a “good bunch.” As a team floater with 10 years on the job, he serves as the supervisor’s back-up lead.

“I’m like a gopher, doing whatever needs to be done,” he says. “When one of the ladies is out, I get to go in and clean patient rooms. I like that because it gives me a chance to relate with patients and families.”

Some of that relating is of the musical variety. He appreciates that Craig is a rehabilitation hospital with long-term patients he can get to know on a first-name basis.

“Sometimes I break out in song and patients will sing along. They say, ‘Bernard, you have a good voice! You should try out for American Idol!’ I just have fun with it and see it as a way to keep patients and families happy,” Bernard says. “It’s all about patients and families.”

Bernard grew up in Sunflower, Mississippi, as a self-proclaimed “farm boy.” He developed his outgoing, friendly and compassionate nature from his loving family. As a child, his family would travel by train to visit his grandparents in Denver during the summer months. As an adult, he was naturally drawn to the area—settling here after spending six years serving our country in the U.S. Army.

In his free time Bernard enjoys drawing, riding his bike on the trails around his home and going to Nuggets games with his brother.

“I try to keep it positive no matter what the day-to-day brings,” he concludes.