Thank you for the uplifting report on the current status of Memorial Community Hospital and Health System (MCH&HS) under the management of Manny Wolf. It made me very proud!
MCH&HS, the Blair Clinic and Dr. Rudy Sievers were the reasons that my family and I moved to Blair in 1964 — the same year that Sievers was the president of the Nebraska State Medical Association.
Sievers had started medical school in 1932. His father, a Schuyler farmer, sold some land, put Sievers' tuition money in the bank, which promptly went broke leaving him penniless. Sievers then took eight years to finish four years of medical school, supporting himself by waiting tables in sororities, etc. and doing research for drug companies. When he graduated he had both an M.D. degree and a PhD in pharmacology.
By that time, World War II was upon us, so Sievers spent the war years in Washington, D.C., working for the National Institutes of Health where he became an expert on the subject of T.N.T. poisoning (this became a problem among workers who were involved in manufacturing explosives).
After the war, Sievers returned to Blair joining with a former classmate, C.D.Howard, forming the basis of what eventually became the Blair Clinic.
Within only a few years, the old Blair Hospital, which was located on the corner lot now occupied by the MCH Auxiliary Closet, became totally inadequate. It was then that Sievers told everyone that unless we get a new hospital, “I’m leaving town!”
With that statement, legendary nurse, Dorena Walker fielded the ball and ran with it, organizing the entire community to create MCH&HS then and which has evolved into what we have here today.
As legendary radio personality, Paul Harvey used to say , "Now you know the REST of the story.”
Doc Charles Bagby