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Hospital pays tribute to donors
Hall of Honor cements benefactors role in project
Lorry and Sherrie Schrage, center, along with Muriel Nathan, left, and Hart Payne attend Thursday evening’s ceremony at the Northeast Georgia Medical Center’s new North Tower. Nathan and the Schrages were honored for their donation of the Nathan-Schrage Art Gallery.

It’s been a long time coming, but the new North Patient Tower at the Northeast Georgia Medical Center officially is complete.

In honor of the project’s completion, hospital administrators and staff held a special ceremony Thursday to unveil the Hall of Honor, which recognizes the donation of signature donors.

"I’m proud of what this building represents. It represents the teamwork, creativity and tenacity of a group of people who turned an idea into the building you see today," said Jim Gardner, health system president and CEO.

"A lot of folks had a hand in creating this building; it’s the largest project in the history of this medical center."

The new tower cost the hospital $180 million. Signature donors contributed $6.1 million to the process to add embellishments that add to the splendor of the seven-story structure.

"We are here today to honor a very special group of people," said Woody Stewart, chairman of The Medical Center Foundation Board of Trustees.

"(Gardner) and his staff had to spend every last dime they had on the core essentials for the hospital — not one of the (special) projects would have happened were it not for the donors we are honoring tonight."

Among the projects that were funded by donor contributions include the Dawn McKibbon Memorial Chapel, Nathan-Schrage Art Gallery and gardens complete with a plethora of flowering plants, water feature and a statue.

Several anonymous donors also contributed funds that were used to cover the cost of the daVinci Surgical System and the tower’s resource center and staff endowment.

The Hall of Honor is a special section off the main entrance of the new tower that pays tribute to the hospital’s donors. On green and blue glass tiles, that hang in front of the hall’s windows, are inscribed the names of donors. Since 1997, the hall’s honorees have contributed more than $25 million to The Medical Center Foundation’s Healthy Journey campaigns.