Advertisement

Tree of Lights shines at hospital

Loved ones honored, remembered with lights, ornaments on tree

Loved ones honored, remembered with lights, ornaments on tree

December 05, 2005|by ERIN CUNNINGHAM

HAGERSTOWN

erinc@herald-mail.com

Betty Metz of Hagerstown lost her husband of 54 years in March.

"It was March 27," she said.

During her first Christmas season without her late husband, Charles, Metz said her children suggested a way to remember him over the holidays.

The family purchased a life light - with a $100 donation - that was part of Sunday's Tree of Lights Ceremony at Washington County Hospital. The light was among hundreds on a large tree outside of the hospital's main entrance.

Advertisement

Sunday's ceremony was the 21st organized by the Washington County Auxiliary. For the second year, money raised from the Tree of Lights will benefit the hospital's special-care nursery, which is expected to begin serving patients in January.

Dove and angel ornaments on the tree were purchased for donations of $25 to $50 and dedicated to a person or a group.

Metz said the life light will become an annual tradition and she will remember her husband each time she drives by the hospital and sees the tree.

The hospital's auxiliary has raised more than $14,400 from 477 donations to the Tree of Lights this year, said Sue Fiedler, Tree of Lights chairwoman. More than $341,000 has been raised since the first event, she said.

Money raised last year was used to purchase an infant incubator/isolette and lights used for a type of therapy in the new special-care nursery. The nursery will serve premature babies or newborns with medical complications who are several weeks younger than the current nursery can support.

Now, babies born younger than 36 weeks are typically taken to Baltimore for treatment. The new nursery will allow mothers and babies to stay in the same hospital.

Money raised this year will benefit a flow generator for the nursery, for treatment of respiratory conditions, and two bilimeters which will measure light energy used for phototherapy.

"It's really a time to remember and honor people who have gone before and look to the future at babies who will be able to stay in our community," said Maureen Theriault, spokeswoman for Washington County Health System.

The Herald-Mail Articles
|
|
|