KBRH maintenance worker Paul Anselmo

KBRH maintenance worker Paul Anselmo

Contractor breaks ground on garden at Trail hospital

Ground was broken at a soon-to-be memorial garden at Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital in Trail to commemorate Dr. Alex T. Melnychuk.

The KBRH Health Foundation is one step closer to commemorating a dedicated doctor that practiced in Trail for many years.

The dust has settled at Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital after ground was broken at a soon-to-be memorial garden Friday.

The “Dr. Alex T. Melnychuk Memorial Garden” is slated for outside Poplar Ridge Pavilion, a fitting location as the late general practitioner spent his latter part of his 37-year career working there.

We feel that the support of the garden project and Poplar Ridge residents would (have been) very important to Dr. Melnychuk,” said Chief of Staff Dr. Trudi Toews.

The memorial garden, which is set for completion by mid July, will have a wide meandering path that will allow for wheelchairs to pass through safely, in addition to an assortment of benches and tables that will also be wheelchair accessible. Several beds of colourful flowering bushes and trees will be designed to create privacy and be visually appealing.

The initiative will align with our concept that improving healthcare for our citizens of the Kootenay Boundary does not just occur inside the hospital walls at KBRH,” Lisa Pasin, Foundation director of development, said in a press release. “Having an area of respite and relaxation for patients, their family members, visitors, volunteers and employees at KBRH is a necessary part of maintaining and improving wellness at KBRH.”

The Foundation is in the midst of securing donations and memorial contributions for the project that is now $11,000 away from meeting its goal. The $62,000 project has been reduced thanks to a $20,000 in-kind donation of equipment, labour and materials from Alpine Contracting and other vendors.

Residents now have the opportunity to purchase a picnic table and or bench that can be affixed with a memorial plaque or a plaque citing a donor’s name. Plants and trees can also be purchased and will be recognized on site, too.

Many Diagnostic Imaging staff had the pleasure of working with Dr. Melnychuk and fondly remember him,” said Sue DeRosa, a professional practice leader for diagnostic imaging at KBRH.

Her department rallied together and recently purchased a memorial picnic table to honour a long-time colleague and friend, Wendy Scott, who passed away last year.

After completing it’s Digital Mammography campaign in February by raising $790,000 within 22 months, the Foundation and the Gardening Committee discussed the creation of a green space outside Poplar Ridge. When Digital Mammography completed earlier than expected, a spring campaign to create the garden started.

Since 1988, the KBRH Health Foundation, formerly the Trail Regional Hospital Foundation, has raised over $11 million to advance health care in the Kootenay Boundary. The Foundation’s revenue is generated through gifts from private and corporate donors.

For more information and to donate, call the foundation at 364-3424 or email info@kbrhhealthfoundation.ca