Approximately 300 staff, retirees and friends of Lake Norman Regional Medical Center dropped by for the hospital’s 20th anniversary celebration on June 6 from 2-4 p.m. in the community rooms at the local hospital.
The line stretched out the door for the buffet provided by the hospital’s dietary department led by Wendy Williamson. The department planned and prepared the special meal, which included chicken sandwiches, shrimp, vegetables and dip, cheese and crackers and punch. A decorated cake noting “20 years on Fairview,” surrounded by cupcakes, was on a separate table in the center of the room.
Several memorabilia tables placed along the walls in the room, as well as in the hall outside the community rooms, were set up with displays of scrapbooks, photo albums, individually framed photos along with newspaper clippings, a hard hat, nurses’ logs books and more for all to look at during the afternoon.
The room was filled with lots of chatter as current and former employees came together for the celebration. One table was a group of plant operators who all combined has served the local hospital for 140 years. Taking time out to enjoy the event, in order of years served included, Rusty Bumgarner, 50 years; Jeff Laber, 32 years; Herb Marks, 20 years; Johnny Brown, 19 years; and Robert Childers, 19 years. This crew, it was noted, takes care of the maintenance of the building and does “just about anything.”
Retired nurses, Nancy Price, Liz Whitlow, Lura Dorton and Frankie Sue Coleman, gathered around another table, sharing about their duties when they were at the hospital, most of them filling multiple roles.
Nancy, an RN, retired on Dec. 31, 2010, and served as a supervisor and case manager. Liz retired in 2007 and spent her time serving as a med surg nurse. Lura began her time at the hospital in 1970 a med surg RN and then moved to the operating room in 1977 before retiring on Aug. 31, 2011. Frankie Sue, a RN, served in two departments before her retirement in December 2017, beginning in the OB department and then moving to the emergency room.
Also on hand for the celebration was Brendan Marr, MD who joined the staff in January of this year. Associated with both Lake Norman Regional Medical Center and Davis, he is a bariatric surgeon. Having moved from Pittsburgh, he resides in Mooresville and shared that he is “very pleased with the move.”
He is the “first provider to join in the 20th year,” said Leigh Whitfield, director of marketing and public relations.
Stephen Midkiff, CEO of the hospital, took the opportunity to share a few words with the crowd as he shared his “thanks for all who have been involved with the hospital during these 20 years,” and he noted that it is "an honor it is to serve as your administrator."
Noting his fascination with statistics, Midkiff shared a few interesting facts that has taken place while the hospital has been at its current location on Fair View Road these 20 years. These included: Births – 18,628; ER visits – 522,153; Inpatient visits – 111,870; Outpatient visits – 989,000.
Groundbreaking for Lake Norman Regional Medical Center was held on Sept. 23, 1997. While the hospital has been at its current location for 20 years, the hospital has been serving the community for a total of 97 years. When LNRMC first opened, there were approximately 90 physicians and 350 employees and today, there are 300 physicians on the medical staff which includes active, courtesy, consulting and affiliate and more than 650 employees noted Whitfield.
“Celebrating 20 years on Fairview Road was a wonderful event recognizing current and past employees, medical staff, volunteers and community members who have had such a tremendous impact in our hospital’s history and success,” said Whitfield. “We are looking forward to celebrating our 100 years of service in the very near future, from our humble beginnings in 1926 to where we are today. Our recent celebration was an opportunity for so many, with or without special ties to the hospital, to walk down memory lane with a sense of nostalgia and pride, as well as appreciation for quality care right here at home.”