Avery joined HCA Healthcare in 2010 as a recruiter, before stepping into the role of Military Affairs Program Manager. He served nearly a decade in that role. He is remembered for his unparalleled passion for recruiting, assisting, and helping veterans feel valued at HCA Healthcare. His efforts also drew results, as can be seen by the numbers of veterans and military spouses hired.
Sherri Neal, Chief Diversity Officer, described him as a “fantastic colleague whose passion for the work and the leadership of the Military Affairs Program was unmatched.”
“What I loved about working with Avery is that he always had such a positive, can-do attitude,” she recalls. “He approached every task with enthusiasm and excitement. He was always so positive and genuinely cared about each and every member of our team. He personally encouraged me in so many ways, and I miss him more than I know how to share.”
“His dedication to helping veterans transition into civilian life was significant,” says Kelly Furbee, VP of HR Operations & Strategy: “His laser focus on this group of people impacted countless lives for the better.”
Kevin Teske, Consulting Project Manager, Parallon, says Avery was a great ambassador for HCA Healthcare, who represented the enterprise at both local and national forums.
“I got to see the respect that military and business leaders showed Avery. He educated them on who HCA Healthcare was and our mission,” Kevin says. “Avery spread goodwill and earned respect for HCA (Healthcare) from all around the country.”
Avery was also a husband, father and pilot, who loved to fly. In his spare time, he also enjoyed fishing, boating, making pottery and spending time with family and friends. He led many veterans’ awareness and appreciation projects throughout the years. But it was his warmth and compassion that many HCA Healthcare colleagues speak of.
“I will miss his kind heart, his compassion for our Veterans and their spouses, his uplifting laugh, but mostly I will miss his friendship,” says Betsy Whitaker, Corporate Sponsorships Manager, DEI.
Terri Schmidt, AVP, Business Risk Solutions also shared the bond of military service with Avery. But that wasn’t the only thing that drew them together: “Avery was an incredible human being, friend, and colleague. My favorite memories of Avery are simply spending time with him. Whether catching up while riding the shuttle or bumping into each other at an event to celebrate someone or something. I was always struck by how much kindness and joy he conveyed in his words and actions.”
In Avery’s honor, HCA Healthcare recently donated a total of $150,000 to local veteran support organizations. HCA Healthcare and the HCA Healthcare Foundation contributed to the following organizations during a Veteran’s Day event: “BRAVE Conversations: Honoring Our Veterans” — REBOOT Recovery, A Soldier’s Child, Operation Stand Down Tennessee, and MTSU Charlie and Hazel Daniels Veterans Military Family Center.