Dental Equipment Heads to Panama
Friday, October 05 2007 @ 07:33 AM UTC
Contributed by: Don Winner
That changed a short while ago when Zernich asked McCormack, a master beekeeper, to stop by his Center Township home to help with a wasp problem. Years ago, McCormack started taking his beekeeping expertise to Panama; along the way, he began gathering clothing, shoes, and - starting about a year ago - medical supplies to take to the impoverished country.
"It just sort of clicked, and I asked Tom if it might be something he could use down there," Zernich said.
Of course, the answer was affirmative. McCormack said there's a new children's hospital in David, Panama, the city where McCormack stays on his annual visits.
"This isn't a for-profit hospital; this is where the poor people go," McCormack said. "I know they don't have equipment like this, and I know they can use it."
McCormack spends the winter months in Panama, working with beekeepers and passing out the equipment and donated clothing he's collected here during the year. A 20-foot shipping crate, already stuffed with crutches, walkers and wheelchairs, will be fully loaded with the dental equipment and boxes and boxes of clothing, prosthetics and small medical items by the end of the month and shipped to Panama.
McCormack had some help packing Thursday morning: Zernich and his wife, Vickie; Moon Township resident Roswitha Firth, one of McCormack's primary helpers; and Martha Gropp, vice president of the hospital auxiliary.
"Tom does amazing things in Panama, and we're so happy to be able to pass this equipment on to someone who will be able to use it," said Gropp, as she stuffed a cardboard box with children's clothing. "We were so disappointed that we weren't going to be able to use it at the hospital. It feels great knowing it's going somewhere it will be appreciated."
Michael Pound can be reached online at firstname.lastname@example.org.
©Beaver County Times Allegheny Times 2007