Each year, In the Loop, like many of the world’s great news organizations, looks back and shares some favorite stories of the year gone by. It’s an edifying exercise, and it gives us a story to publish around the holidays that doesn’t feel like real work. (Especially when we use the same clever packaging year after year.)
Since we’re not a particularly scientific lot, we simply pick our own favorites of the past year. And then we whittle our list down to a reasonable number that happens to line up with the year. So, without further ado, here are 14 of our favorite Mayo tales from 2014:
From Squalor to Scholar – John Schupbach’s path to Mayo Medical School included a detour to a slum in northern India, where he found a calling in helping local children find an education.
Soldier Rouses Sleep Medicine Center With Surprise Return – Bernie Miller was surprised at his work by his son, a soldier returning from Afghanistan, who enlisted the help of a neighbor to capture it all on video.
Drawing the Worry Away – Patients lucky enough to have James Rase as their patient care assistant often wake to find drawings on their white boards that remind them of their life outside the hospital.
A Priceless Gift to Parents Who Lose a Baby – When duty calls, Jan Favret, a cardiology nurse, picks up her camera and provides remembrance photography to families who have lost a baby, often to stillbirth. What that can mean for the family is hard to put into words.
The Rhinestone Cowboy and Mayo Clinic – Ronald Petersen, M.D., Ph.D., takes to the big screen in a documentary called, “Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me” to talk about Alzheimer’s and what needs to be done about the disease.
Diners, Drive-Ins and Little Boo – Boo Maddox, who spent 500 days in the hospital battling H1N1, tells Meredith Vieira about what he’d like to do now that he’s recovering. Then she gives him a surprise that leaves young Boo speechless.
Throwback Thursday: Snail Mail Sleuthing – Pharmacists at Mayo Clinic received a letter in the mail that was indecipherable except for the words, “I need help.” They knew just what to do.
Mayo Musical Miracles – The patient hadn’t spoken in more than two years, but as Teri Nelson played a favorite song, the “Blue Skirt Waltz,” in the Gonda Building’s atrium, “something miraculous happened.”
Team Ginny: A Show of Support for One of Their Own – After Ginny Kelley was diagnosed with cancer, three Mayo Clinic physicians she works closely with shaved their heads to show their support and solidarity.
Team Lola – Most 13-year-old girls wouldn’t see having a scar down the middle of their chest as cool. Lola Montilla, however, is not most 13-year-old girls. She says her scar is a reminder of what she's been through and how it's made her stronger.
Instrumental in Making Music – After Mara Reed lost her ability to play her beloved oboe, she turned to pediatric otolaryngologist Shelagh Cofer, M.D., who asked her to bring the oboe into the OR for a unique procedure.
Piano as Canvas, and Respite – What happens when you tell a bunch of kids it’s okay to paint a piano? When it’s a group of kids looking for a break from the reality of hospitalization, it just might be something magical.
‘I Am a Mayo Success Story’ … But Not in the Way You’re Thinking – A Mayo patient writes that she is a “Mayo success story” despite the fact that she’s still waiting for an answer, thanks to the “magician in a white lab coat” working tirelessly on her behalf.
A Message in Nail Polish – A reflection shared at by a medical student at the Anatomy Department Convocation of Thanks highlights the importance of seeing the individual in ‘patients’ who’ve bequeathed their bodies to science.
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