Published: Dec 25, 2012 5:56 PM EST

LEE COUNTY, Fla.- Not everyone had Christmas Day off to spend with family and friends. So supervisors at Lee Memorial Health System made sure to take care of employees who were busy taking care of others.

Managers and supervisors at all Lee Memorial campuses volunteered to serve free meals to staff members working on the holiday.

Darrell Detzel is the respiratory care services director, so doesn't normally spend his day in the cafeteria at Healthpark Medical Center, but he put on the apron and gloves for Christmas.

He says, "they do so much for us, they're the workers, they're what makes things happen around here and it's just nice for leadership, for us to give back to them in some way."

This was Detzel's first time serving the holiday meal. "I enjoy it, I made sure I went by my department before I came down here and told them hey, come down and get your food, I'll serve you extra," he says.

Patrick Wood is a cook in the cafeteria, and enjoyed having the managers in his arena for the day. "It's great, they are usually busy doing other things during the season and today it's good to have them help us and see it from our point of view and to have their extra smiling faces makes a difference," he says.

Detzel says, "they're having a good time, actually having a good time, it's almost like a day off for them to sit there and have us serve them for a change."

Nurse Jamie Laakmann says the meal makes her feel appreciated, in a job that doesn't get a day off. She says, "it makes you feel good, makes you feel like you are doing something beneficial to help them feel better. They are here being sick and they're not with their families so you're acting as not only their caregiver but a member of their family today."