About two weeks ago, our local newspaper made the stunning announcement that our local community hospital CEO will be leaving at the end of the year. For those of you that live in small communities, having a wonderful hospital as we do is live saving for us.
In the past 2 years that we have been here, I have had wonderful experiences at our local hospital. From leaving at 0200 with the much needed medication dosage for my grands ear infection so they can be dosed and started to heal before the pharmacies open in the mornings. You see, we do not have a 24 hour pharmacy(s) like many larger towns do, so it is important to be on those meds as soon as possible. The CEO brought this about.
When another grand was screaming with tummy pain and we thought she had Appendicitis, the nurses and auxilary personnel, came in and talked to her about how brave she was, they talked to her when explaining procedures, NOT me, they treated her as if she were an adult and to me that meant so much. They gave her a kite when she left and hugs. When she recognized one of her class mates fathers, he took time out of his schedule to come in and sit and talk with her.
When I was the patient, they did everything they could to stabilize my situation before sending me home and it was the physician on duty that brought me a snack knowing I would not be able to eat shortly after leaving the hospital enroute to a larger one.
What is important about this is when we first moved here, so many of the locals had nothing but negative things to say about our local hospital and each time I heard that, I told them how wrong they were, asked when was the last time they were up there and over the last 2 years, the negativity has changed to amazement.
I felt it was important to acknowledge the wonderful changes our CEO at Grays Harbor Community Hospital, John Mitchell has not only done to the hospital and our community, but how his family touched our life. I wrote the following letter to our newspaper:
It has taken me about a week to write this as I didn’t want my emotions to be involved, but I think once you know John Mitchell and his family, saying good-bye is emotional.
Our family moved up here in 2006/2007 and John’s wife and daughter were the first people our grandchildren came to know and love. They fell in love with all of them — dogs included.
Matter of fact, it wasn’t until months later I realized John was the CEO, of Grays Harbor Community Hospital and it wasn’t any of his family who told me.
When we first moved here, so many people had so much negative to tell us about Grays Harbor Community Hospital and with each trip to the emergency room or auxiliary services, I found only smiling, caring and compassionate people.
I was amazed when we left the hospital with medication to get my granddaughter through the night until the local pharmacies opened and realized just how special our hospital is.
Everyone, I have met, who tells me Grays Harbor Community Hospital is bad, I let them know I have never once experienced it and have only had positive experiences.
I believe when John leaves in December I will be able to continue to say that because I believe he will leave a legacy of caring behind him.
When December comes, I know that our family will have to wrap up a bit tighter because the Mitchells will take some of the warmth we feel from their friendship with them.
It is my fervent hope that while the next CEO cannot fill John’s shoes, that he/she continue on in the tradition that John brought and that can only make Grays Harbor Community Hospital shine brighter in the lives of those who remain in Grays Harbor.
When was the last time you had an amazing experience with a business whether it be local, distant, over the telephone or in person and you took the time to sit down, find out where that CEO could be located and wrote them a letter saying thank you?
John's wife Paula would walk their dogs and began stopping by with bubblegum for the kids, she even left some on our front porch table and a note when she went on vacation, she sent them post cards and brought them small stuffed animals which they cherish. We understand that Paula has been extremely busy with family in Colorado and we haven't seen much of her lately, but the kids are always on the look out for her and the dogs.
Friday, we dropped off a card for the Mitchell family and a huge bag of bubblegum not for us, but for the new neighbors they come to know in Colorado and we know that while a hole may be left in our hearts, the Mitchell's will bring love and warmth to their new neighbors.
Reach out today and tell someone what a great job they are doing. Perhaps your local Target store, Macys, grocery store, hospital, nursing home...so many people are trashing everyone, lets do what God wants us to do and bring cheer to people and not disappointment.