Award-winning writer born at St. Rose de Lima Hospital tells the story of the ministry undertaken by seven brave women in 1947
“Only Hollywood’s dizziest dreamers could have conjured up the storyline of how seven Adrian Dominican Sisters dressed in angelic white traveled in the heat of the summer by a Union Pacific train from southern Michigan to notorious post-war Las Vegas; how they bought the struggling Basic Magnesium Hospital standing outside the gates of a fading magnesium plant for $1; and how they overcame withering financial challenges to carve out a legacy of compassion, care, and ethics. The faith-based mission of St. Rose has spread far and continues to reverberate after seventy-five years. In saving the hospital, the seven Adrian Dominican Sisters helped save a whole town. Sounds like the plot of a Frank Capra movie, doesn’t it? The best part is, it’s all true.”
As part of its ongoing 75th anniversary celebration, St. Rose Dominican Hospitals commissioned longtime Nevada author and columnist John L. Smith to focus his considerable writing talents on the incredible 75-year journey that began when seven brave women took over operation of Henderson’s only hospital in 1947 and through their ministry created what is now Nevada’s only faith-based, nonprofit hospital group.
A Henderson native whose family’s Nevada roots go back to 1881, Mr. Smith has a longtime connection to St. Rose de Lima Hospital. He and two of his sisters were born there.
In his article he writes:
“Rose de Lima Hospital holds a special place in many hearts, mine not least. You might say St. Rose, as it’s affectionately known, had me at hello. Like thousands of other Southern Nevadans, I was born at St. Rose back when Henderson was still a factory town and few imagined the place ‘born in America’s defense’ during World War II would one day become the state’s second largest city.”
Randy Boynton, Vice President of Marketing for Dignity Health-St. Rose Dominican, said, “We are very fortunate that a writer of John’s caliber and connection to both our hospital and community agreed to tell our story. The care we provide our patients every day stems from the tradition of compassionate care provided by the original seven Sisters. We are eager to share our rich history and hope many will enjoy the stories John has captured.”
Mr. Smith crafts a compelling read which explores the spirit, history, and compassion of the Sisters’ ministry in the unique voice southern Nevada readers have come to expect and appreciate from one of Henderson’s most talented storytellers.
The complete essay can be viewed on the St. Rose Dominican 75th Anniversary website – St. RoseHospitals.org/75.
About Dignity Health-St. Rose Dominican
As the community’s only not-for-profit, faith-based health system, Dignity Health-St. Rose Dominican has been guided by the vision and core values of the Adrian Dominican Sisters since 1947. As the Henderson and Las Vegas communities grow, the St. Rose Dominican health system and its nearly 4,000 employees will continue the Sisters’ mission of serving people in need. St. Rose Dominican is a member of the multi-state Dignity Health network of 10,000 physicians, more than 60,000 employees, 41 acute care hospitals and 400-plus care-centers including neighborhood hospitals, urgent care, surgery and imaging centers, and primary care clinics.