Thank you to the CMH Emergency Room staff!


Melissa Stagnaro

I’m ashamed to admit that I had one of those moments of self pity on the way home from work yesterday. You know, when you think about how much your life sucks. But honestly, I didn’t really have much to complain about. What was I moping about? Stupid things, like being dateless for New Year’s and the ex-boyfriend who has been harassing me for months trying to sue me or have me arrested over a cat. Hardly worth a full out pity party.

But when I got home, a phone call put everything into a little better perspective. It was from my mom, telling me that my father was in the emergency room.

Now, if you don’t have the pleasure of knowing my father, let me tell you a little about him. My father is the strongest person I know. There is nothing weak about the man, even at 74.

Sickness just doesn’t fit with his persona, or his physique. It clashes with his 6’4” frame, and the very way he carries himself. Even though he retired from the NYPD more than 30 years ago, he still has that commanding presence guaranteed to intimidate lesser mortals and teenage boys.

He has only been truly ill a handful of times that I’m aware of. It’s always seemed a logical assumption that germs, bacteria and disease knew they wouldn’t stand a chance, so took to avoiding him altogether.

He is also fiercely proud, and will probably stop speaking to me indefinitely when he finds out I wrote this. He didn’t even want me to call my siblings.

For him, letting anyone know that he isn’t immortal is almost worse than being sick. He does not admit weakness, which is probably why he’s such a rotten patient at the best of times. Put him in a backless gown, deprive him of his evening martini, and you better look out.

I’m sure that didn’t make the jobs of anyone on staff at Chenango Memorial’s ER last night, any easier. But you never would have known it by the quality of care he received. Every last one of them was fantastic. They treated my father with so much respect and took such good care of him, that I can not fully express my gratitude.

I know theirs is often a thankless job, and our local hospital takes more than its fair share of criticism, but I have nothing but praise for their tremendous efforts to keep my father comfortable and diagnose his condition.

I’d love to thank each and every one of them personally, but I’m afraid I didn’t catch every name. I do want to particularly thank Cherokee, Cathy, Missy, Meredith, Cindy, Dr. Harper, Dr. Waters and Dr. Cook. You were all wonderful. Thank you so much for taking care of my dad.

Oh, and if you see my dad, you did not hear this from me!