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Palmyra recognizes local humanitarians

Photo by Laura Williams

Photo by Laura Williams

ALBANY -- Palmyra Medical Center recently recognized three individuals that go beyond their normal service to preserve quality of life both inside the facility and out.

Dozens were in attendance when Palmyra presented its annual Frist Humanitarian Awards in the hospital's cafeteria on Thursday.

There were awards presented in three categories: employee, volunteer and physician.

Margaret Windham, director of community services, was the employee winner. A Palmyra employee since 1984, Windham is active in United Way, March of Dimes, and Relay for Life.

"I know I would not be here today without all of you," she said to her peers present. "I do believe in going the extra mile. This is just the best place in the world to work for."

Mary Louise Hollowell was the winner in the volunteer category. A volunteer since 2001, she has given her services to education, occupational health and administration.

"I believe I'm at a loss for words," she said. "I hope our (she and her husband's) daughters would be proud."

Hollowell is active in her church, and also volunteers at St. Teresa's School and the Salvation Army. She and her husband, John Hollowell, deliver for Meals on Wheels.

When asked what her advice to potential volunteers would be, Hollowell responded: "Do all you can; it's important."

Dr. Deborah Trammell was recognized as the physician award winner. Currently medical director of the hospital's laboratory services, Trammel has been on staff at Palmyra since 1994. She has supported March of Dimes, and has been a participant and an active supporter of the American Cancer Society.

"I think my 15 years here have been the best I've had," she said upon receiving the award. "It's not just doing the work we like, but (getting involved) in the community. It's nice to have people who just do and help so much."

Trammell has also helped build homes for Habitat for Humanity, and travels on mission trips to underdeveloped countries.

Each of the winners received a check, a plaque, a parking space, a certificate and flowers. The check for the physician award is being sent to the charity of the winner's choice. The recipients are also eligible to win the national Frist Humanitarian Award to be announced later in the year.

"This is by far the most prestigious award given by HCA (Hospital Corporation of America, owner and operator of Palmyra)," said Mark Rader. "This is just a special award for so many reasons."

The Frist Humanitarian Award, named after the late Dr. Thomas Frist Sr., the founder of HCA, was created in 1971 to honor special individuals who's lives reflect humanitarian values.

"When First formed the company, he wanted to make sure we had (employees, physicians and volunteers) who were humanitarians," Rader said. "(The award winners) truly put others before themselves."