April 15, 2011

Two very special couples who volunteer at CAMC not only share their lives together, they share a love of helping others.

(From left) Bill and Leah May McMorran, Bob and Marie UnderwoodBob and Marie Underwood and Bill and Leah May McMorran have been volunteers for several years at CAMC. Each of the couples has a great appreciation for their role in helping patients, families and visitors have the best possible experience at CAMC. Marie Underwood started her volunteer work at CAMC in February 1999, and her husband joined in September 2005.


"I felt like I needed something to do after retiring," Marie said. "I started at the Memorial flower desk, then went to the patient access center, then to the emergency room." 


Marie said that the busy ER environment has been great for her. "I love patient and people contact," she said. "I walk around, talk to patients, comfort them and listen to them and their families. I also run errands for the department staff, if needed."


Marie's husband, Bob, also has what many people would consider a non-traditional volunteer role. 


"I volunteer in the surgical unit at Memorial Hospital," he said. "I'm sort of a jack-of-all trades: I go to the blood bank, put forms together and do other things as needed."


Both Bob and Marie have found their volunteer roles to be tremendously rewarding. 


"It's been a good learning experience and has given me a new set of life experiences," Bob said. "As a volunteer, you build a relationship with employees and feel like you're a part of their team."


"I like that you meet people from all different walks of life when you volunteer," Marie said. "And, all of the people I work with have been super. We have a great appreciation of them, and they tell me they are appreciative of what we do."  


Both Bob and Marie have served with the Memorial Hospital auxiliary board, raising funds to purchase new equipment for the hospital. Bob is the current board president, and Marie was the secretary for nine years.


Bob and Marie have been married for 57 years and have two children who they enjoy traveling to visit, one who lives in Florida and one in Wisconsin. 


Bill and Leah May McMorran volunteer not only at the same hospital, but at the same location and time. They serve together at the flower desk at General Hospital on Tuesdays.


Leah May also volunteers on 7 South at General. She has been a volunteer since July 2003, and Bill since October 2004. 


Leah May said that their volunteering together is just an extension of their life.


"We've always done a lot together over the years," she said. They have been married for 63 years, and have five children, who Bill e-mails every day to stay in touch. 


The McMorrans have also found their volunteer work to be very fulfilling. "We have a team going," Leah May said. He looks up the names and I deliver the flowers. We serve the patients, staff and visitors."


A friend from church convinced Leah May to start volunteering at CAMC and Bill followed soon after. "He's always up and ready to go on Tuesdays when it's time to come," she said. "It's rewarding and has filled our need to be with people."  


"It's been a good life with good memories, and working here is part of that good life," Bill said.


For more information about volunteering at CAMC, visit the volunteer page or call (304)388-7426.


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