Christmas at Work - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Jonesboro, AR -- Marsha Mays Reporting

Christmas at Work

DECEMBER 25, 2006 -- POSTED AT 7:00 P.M. CST

JONESBORO, AR -- The majority of businesses close their doors on Christmas Day, but like the news, some jobs must go on, working right through each and every holiday.

If you drive through Jonesboro on Christmas Day, parking lots look a lot different. Even     Wal-Mart, your 24-hour superstore is closed on Christmas Day. But there are those certain jobs that don't ever close. Carmen Smith has been a nurse for 6 years now and on Christmas, you can find her at work.

"We all have to work several holidays in our jobs. When we work here, we just expect to work holidays, so that's just part of it," says Smith.

But she says that doesn't make it easy. Christmas is a time usually shared with family and friends, instead of your co-workers.

"It's hard being away from your family and missing out on things that you do at Christmas, but opening the presents and things like that just have to be done on a different day at a different time," says Smith.

Dr. Daron Merryman, an emergency room physician at St. Bernard's says over the years, he's gotten used to working holidays, something he says who just come to expect in this job.

"People get sick on the holidays, so that's why we're here, but you still miss your family and your friends while you're doing it," says Dr. Merryman.

Most restaurants are even closed on Christmas Day, but we did find a few with the lights on. IHOP on Caraway Road in Jonesboro is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and 365 days a year. Shelly Hatfield has been a server at IHOP for nearly 5 years now and surprisingly, she says she likes working on Christmas.

"I enjoy it because there are people that don't have homes to go to that come out to eat with their friends or whatever and we get to wait on those people and make them feel at home. That's our job," says Hatfield.

Christmas at work; a little out of the ordinary for most folks, but for many it's just another day.

"There's that common Merry Christmas that goes back and forth between us all, but otherwise it's pretty much business as usual," adds Dr. Merryman.

"We just stay focused and do our job like we normally do it, like any other day of the year," says Carmen Smith.

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