St. Joseph’s General Hospital launched its new commemorative book Friday, celebrating 100 years of service to the Comox Valley.
“I think it’s particularly important to reflect back on our history because it’s really about who we are today,” hospital president and CEO Jane Murphy said as the book was launched in the hospital’s Sisters’ Café. It’s important “that we take this time to stop and reflect on St. Joseph’s and the wonderful history and relationship that this organization has had with our community.
“From the very day the sisters landed … the community was there to support the sisters and their mission of developing a hospital and providing care to the sick and those in need.”
One hundred years ago, four Sisters of St. Joseph of Toronto came to Comox to establish a hospital, after an urgent request for medical care for loggers and their families from J.D. McCormack, who was president of the Comox Logging Company.
What started as a four-bed hospital in a farm house evolved into the hospital that is here today, and the 32-page book highlights the rich history of the hospital from then until now. The book is highly visual, with numerous historical photos throughout showing the history of the hospital, rather than simply telling it with words.
The creation of St. Joseph’s General Hospital: Care with Compassion, 100 years of Service is one of a number of ways the hospital celebrated its 100th anniversary this year. A mural was installed in the hospital lobby, commemorative videos were created, the hospital held a gala, plus a community celebration on its grounds, and healing gardens are currently being built outside the Sisters’ Café.
Murphy thanked the many hospital staff and community members who contributed their time, efforts and creativity to make the book.
“Something like this doesn’t just happen,” said Murphy. “An incredible amount of work, including a lot of detail, really needs to go in to organizing and ending up with a production of such a nice publication.”
The book is available at the Hospital Auxiliary Gift Shop, Laughing Oyster and Blue Heron Book stores and at the Courtenay and District Museum and Comox Museum and Archives. It costs $25, and proceeds will help pay for centennial celebration activities.