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CLUBS AND ORGANIZATIONS

The Citrus Memorial Hospital Auxiliary Organization gives scholarships to deserving students studying to be nurses. Four scholarships were awarded at a recent breakfast to honor the recipients. Jennifer Lovell, Cindy Eldridge, Torii Croft and Kym Householder were the most recent recipients.

Jennifer Lovell is employed at CMH on the third floor. She is attending Central Florida Community College to become an LPN. Her goal is to become an RN and work at CMH.

"Helping people has always been my goal and I am proud to be the first of my family of seven children to attend college," said Ms. Lovell.

Cindy Eldridge is a student in the "Bridge Over" Program that allows LPNs to attend college to become an RN.

"I tried other employment but it just didn't suit me until I started in the medical field," said Eldridge.

Torii Croft is a student at Pasco Hernando Community College in Brooksville studying to be an RN. As a child she expressed a desire to enter the Medical Field, but she was told she was not smart enough.

"But there is a silver lining in every cloud," said Ms. Croft. "My silver lining was realizing that I was capable of meeting my goals and this scholarship really helps me," said Croft.

Kym Householder is a Surgical Tech and has a goal of becoming a registered nurse.

"At first I thought I wanted to be a teacher, but suddenly it hit me that I was more suited for the medical field. I am so happy I made that change," said Ms. Householder. She will be a Surgical Registered Nurse when she finishes college.

All recipients are interviewed by a committee of auxiliary members.

"Recipients must be an employee of CMH for one year before their application can be considered for the Scholarship Program," said Sara Kelly, Chairperson of the Committee. "We are very proud to give $10,000 in scholarships each year through our fundraising," said Kelly.

PEOPLE

Terri Adams, clinical coordinator of Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation at Citrus Memorial Hospital, is amazed every year at the generosity of her patients in the Cardiopulmonary Rehab unit.

"Our patients have consistently donated money to sponsor Christmas gifts for children listed with the Family Resource Center in Citrus County," she said recently. "This year we collected $720, and even after the deadline for donations we still had patients trying to give."

Adams knows that as Christmas draws near, her patients "begin inquiring if we are going to keep our tradition and start collecting for the children."

They find that donating for the children at FRC is a way for patients and staff to help someone less fortunate enjoy the holidays.

With collected donations, staff members shop for the children. The Cardiopulmonary Rehab unit "adopted" five children this year and also assisted the Respiratory Department in buying warm clothes for their two children. They were able to supply everything on the childrens' wish lists "and then some."

Why are CMH's Cardiopulmonary Rehab patients so loyal to this project? They give for different reasons. For some, it is because their families are not near, or their grandchildren are grown, "and this helps them celebrate Christmas," said Adams.

"They don't want to be named, but we really want to give them special recognition, because they are special and we thank them," she added.

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Larry O'Quinn was chosen as the Volunteer of the Month for January at a recent Breakfast for Volunteers at Citrus Memorial Hospital.

Mr. O'Quinn joined the Auxiliary Volunteers in August 2000. He has served 1,754 hours in the former Breakfast Bar, on the fourth floor, in the lab and recently in general stores.

He loves to cook and it is his first love, but working at the General Stores in the Hospital is a close second.

He was nominated for the award by Irene Brugh, General Stores Supervisor. Larry has expanded his service by learning the computer, which enables him to work independently according to Brugh.

"He is very dedicated, loyal, and even worked on Christmas," said Brugh with a smile.

According to Iva Puckett, president elect of the Auxiliary, he is a dedicated faithful volunteer that depends on the volunteer position to fulfill his life.

NOTE OF THANKS

Editor:

Citrus County is nationally identified for it's bountiful natural resources. A great place to live, recreate and retire. What truly compliments Citrus County beauty is its citizens.

We discovered in the process of the Toys For Tots campaign a community spirit of magnanimous generosity that stretched from border to border. We are humbled and truly grateful to the business community and the many thousands of our citizens who contributed and made the Toys For Tots campaign an overwhelming success. The Toys For Tots team collected, and/or purchased 11,857 toys and 10,012 books. In keeping with the Standard Operating Procedures established by the Marine Corps Foundation, all toys were distributed exclusively to Citrus County's neediest residents.

In keeping with the goal of reaching the needy children, I met with the directors of the three largest social agencies in Citrus County. Salvation Army, Family Resource Center and Citrus United Basket all maintain a data base of needy children, therefore the lion's share of toys collected were distributed to each of these three agencies for ultimate distribution to the following: Family Resource Center, Salvation Army, Citrus United Basket, Grandparents Raising Grandchildren, Sertoma Mentoring Circle, 690th Military Police Company, Citrus Volunteer Fire Departments (stocking stuffers), Citrus Memorial Hospital Emergency Room (plush animals), Seven Rivers Hospital Emergency Room (plush animals) and Nature Coast and Manatee Chapters of Young Marines. Various Day Care centers were also given plush animals.

All gently used plush animals are not counted or distributed in Citrus County. These were given to a Marine who takes them to Boggy Creek, a facility in Lake County that handles terminally ill children. The number exceeded 800.

Scholastic Books Inc. donated 10,012 new books. They consisted of 26 different titles primarily for 1st through 3rd graders. These were distributed to all libraries, 29 day care centers (via the Citrus County School Readiness Coalition), Sertoma Mentoring Circle, Family Resource Center, Salvation Army, St. Scholastica and other public schools throughout Citrus County.

We would like to recognize and thank the following people who made TOYS FOR TOTS 2004 successful: Citrus County Board of County Commissioners; Citrus County Chamber of Commerce; United States Postal Service; Inverness Kiwanis; Kings Bay, Inverness, Crystal River and Black Diamond Rotary; Nature Coast Motor Sports Crystal River; K-Mart, Crystal River; Wal-Mart Super Center, Inverness; Publix; Winn Dixie and Kash n' Karry, Homosassa; Big Lots, Inverness; Dollar General Stores; Dollar Tree Stores; Citrus County Chronicle; St. Petersburg Times; Toys "R" Us; Jackie Gaffney (Golden Girl); Capital City Bank Floral City; SunTrust Bank Sugarmill Woods; Remax Reality One Inverness; Knights of Columbus; Lady of Fatima Bingo Hall; Capt. Ric Craig FUN 102.1 FM; Ron & Lisa WOW 104.3 FM; Beverly Hills Polish American Club; Meadowcrest Homeowners Association; Windermere Homeowners Association; Moorings Homeowners Association; Homosassa Community Center; Southern Woods Country Club; Sugarmill Woods Country Club; East Citrus Community Center; Point O'Woods Country Club; Democratic Club Sugarmill Woods; Fero Funeral Home; CVS Pharmacy Beverly Hills; Beverly Hills Bowling; Neffers Bowling; Sportsman's Bowl; Eagles Ladies Shuffleboard League; Amateur Association of Ballroom Dancers; Golden Corral Restaurant; Cinnamon Sticks Restaurant; Subway Inverness; Cockadoodles Cafe; Yannis Restaurant; Romano's Restaurant; Luigi's Restaurant; Old World Restaurant; Mike's Friendly Pub; Firestone Inverness; Pat's Barber Shop; Island Food Store; Sylvan Learning Center; Citony Development Corporation, Citrus Springs; Sanderson Bay Fine Homes; Mercedes Development Corporation; Welch's Cabinets & Appliances; Coastal Trophy & Design; Marine Corps League Detachment 1139; KWVA Chapter 192; VFW Post 4337; VFW Post 8189; VFW 4352 Ladies Auxiliary; Military Outlet Inc.; Dan Oblinger, Ken Williams, Nancy Reedy, Harlan Rainey, O.L. Jackson and the TOYS FOR TOTS Marine Corps Foundation who shipped more than $7,000 of toys to Citrus County.

Paul Pilny,

Toys For Tots Coordinator

The Citrus Memorial Hospital Auxiliary Organization recently presented scholarships to four deserving students studying to be nurses. From left are recipients Cindy Eldridge and Torii Croft; Sara Kelly, chairperson of Scholarship Committee; Ryan Beaty, CEO and president of CMH; and recipients Kym Householder and Jennifer Lovell.

Citrus Memorial Hospital cardiopulmonary rehabilitation staff members Lori DeBoskey, LPN; Registered Respiratory Therapist Terri Adams, clinical coordinator of Cardiopulmonary Rehab; Lynda Powers, RN; and Krysta White, Patient Care assistant enjoyed the holiday season because of the generosity of patients who donated $720 toward purchasing holiday gifts for children sponsored through the Family Resource Center. Staff members shopped for the children and fulfilled their wish lists.

Larry O'Quinn was chosen Volunteer of the Month for January by the Citrus Memorial Hospital Auxiliary. From left are Iva Puckett, president elect of the Auxiliary; Mr. Ryan Beaty, CEO and president of CMH; Larry O'Quinn, Volunteer of the Month; and Irene Brugh, supervisor of General Stores.

REPLENISHING BOOK SUPPLY: Friends of Lakes Region Library recently presented Flossie Benton Rogers, library director for the Citrus County Library System, with a check for $5,000 for large print fiction, westerns and mysteries, children's books, CDs and DVDs. From left are Erika Nemeth, Friends director; Glenda Martin, secretary; Judy Rose, director; Leslie Fraze, president; Santa (aka Bill Emener); Flossie Benton Rogers; Sandy Price, vice president; and Donna Bockskopf, treasurer. The donation was from money raised at the Friends of the Citrus County Library System's Fall Book Sale. The new library materials will be on the shelves at Lakes Region Library in a few months.

SUPPORTING SOLDIERS: Members the Zig Zaggers sewing group in Sugarmill Woods are making neck coolers for the Women of Sugarmill Woods. Sitting from left are Tina Rose and Gloria Schmelzer; standing from left are Carol McConnaughey, Jan Pierson, Barbara Youmell and Susan Dean. These are only a few of the many women who are working on this project. The Women of Sugarmill Woods plans to deliver hundreds of these neck coolers to the Crystal River Florida National Guard for shipment in March to our soldiers serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. The soldiers work in temperatures averaging around 125 degrees in the summer, and the neck coolers help to significantly keep their body temperature cooler.

AN AVIAN IMPERSONATION: Joan Garland, education outreach coordinator for the International Crane Foundation, helps sixth-grader T.J. Jones demonstrate the authentic crane suit used to work with crane chicks. Garland visited Citrus Springs Middle School to discuss the cranes' arrival at Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge in early December.

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