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A Message from CEO

The Legacy Lives On

What St. Francis Medical Center represents to our community.

If you look out over Lynwood, there is a symbol that rises above the city. It can be seen as you walk down Imperial Highway. You take notice as you navigate Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard. It draws your attention as you drive down the 105 freeway. And it distinguishes us as a place of healing and hope. It is the cross that crests the top of the St. Francis Medical Center Patient Tower.

The Patient Tower was dedicated nearly 21 years ago on April 30, 2000. Since that day, a person need only raise their eyes to see the mirrored green glass shine upward to the building’s spire, which is crowned by the cross. Visible for miles, the cross reflects light by day and is set aglow by a fusion of fiber optics by night.

As time and age will have it, the nighttime luminescence of our cross has dimmed. But our 24-hour mission of providing quality, compassionate healthcare to this community has never diminished. Thanks to our Facilities team, we are in the process of restoring the cross’s evening radiance. This is important because community members look to us as a beacon of hope.

Several years ago, a teenaged girl was lured out to Los Angeles from Ohio by an ad promising fame and fortune and a modeling career. Unknowingly, she became the victim of human traffickers and was held against her will at a motel in Lynwood. At a chance moment, when her captors stepped away, she escaped and started walking. She did not know where she was going, but she kept walking. It was the 4 am hour, dark and cold.

Something led her to look up. She saw the cross on our tower. She knew the cross meant a safe place, a place where she could find help.

Upon arriving, the Public Safety team reached out to Brother Richard Hirbe in Spiritual Care. Onsite early to minister to patients, Br. Richard immediately responded. He made sure she received the care she needed in the Emergency Department. With the help of Social Services and other clinical and support staff, Brother Richard secured food and warm clothes for the young girl. An airline ticket back to Ohio was purchased through a generous donation from one of our physicians, and a joyful phone call was placed to the girl’s worried aunt and guardian, letting her know that her niece was safe and coming home.

It is personal testimonies such as this one that affirms the significance of the cross to our community. What is exhibited on the outside of our hospital represents who we are on the inside – the doctors, nurses, leaders, allied health, and support staff who welcome every person in need of our care into our home.