They’re far from home, but thanks to a new permanent display at Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn, local members of the military are not forgotten.
The four-foot by six-foot “Salute to the Military” installation, which will be unveiled Sunday during a ceremony at the hospital’s Osborn campus, was conceived to be a visual reminder of the sacrifices members of the military and their families are making.
“We wanted to recognize and thank those serving our country for us. This is our way of giving back to our community and our staff, their families and those involved in our military training program,” said Wendy Lyons, vice president of community stewardship for Scottsdale Healthcare.
The Plexiglas-covered display, which is located within the hospital’s lobby, was designed by General Dynamics’ art directors David Gryp and Ed Green. It features the names of Scottsdale Healthcare employees, employee family members and military medical personnel who have gone through the healthcare organization’s training program, who are currently deployed, said Scottsdale Healthcare spokeswoman Alice Sluga.
Markers on the installation’s world map indicate where each military honoree is deployed and offers information on where each honoree is from.
Each month, at least one honoree will be highlighted in detail. This month’s special honorees are Dr. Frederick Marciano, a neurosurgeon at Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn, who is currently deployed at the William Beaumont Medical Center at Fort Bliss, Texas and Lt. Col. Robert Dixon, a trauma surgeon with the 56th Medical Group at Luke Air Force Base, who is deployed to Iraq. Dixon has participated at Scottsdale Healthcare’s military training program for the past three years. The program readies military medical personnel to treat a variety of combat injuries, including burns, blast fractures, traumas and wounds.
The organization is planning to erect similar installations at their Thompson Peak and Shea campuses next year, she said.
A number of government dignitaries, including U.S. Rep. Harry Mitchell, D-Ariz., are expected to attend Sunday’s ceremony.
For Scottsdale Healthcare employee Charlie Brown of Phoenix, the display means a great deal to his family.
“I have two boys over there,” Brown said of his sons Stephen, 25, and Jeffrey, 23, who are serving in Iraq with the U.S. Army.
Brown said three generations of his family have served their country. His father, Julius, 91, is an army veteran of the World War II, Korea and Vietnam. Brown said he is a Vietnam veteran as well. But he didn’t come home to a military tribute.
“When I came back, people spit on me,” said Brown, supervisor of Scottsdale Healthcare’s Shea’s biomedical engineering shop.
“I’m thankful they (Scottsdale Healthcare) are recognizing the military. Some people don’t realize the stress that’s put on the whole family. I hope it raises awareness,” said Brown, who plans to show the military salute to his son Stephen, who is expected to return to his Mesa home next month.