May 26, 2016

Groundbreaking draws over 3,000

An expanded Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital and new adult Medical Center will open its doors to the community in 2020, and judging from the turnout to the May 22 groundbreaking event, community members are ready and eager.

More than 3,000 individuals attended the event, during which a ceremonial groundbreaking took place and a number of booths offered wholesome children’s activities, making it a festal day long to be remembered. See video of the event, and for photos, view the gallery at the bottom of this story

During the groundbreaking program, Richard Hart, MD, DrPH, president, Loma Linda University Health, recapped the history of the organization, saying, “This institution was built through stages by visionary leaders who took the realities of their day and molded them into a strategy for the future.

 “Our hospitals are where our beliefs are put into action,” Hart continued, “where our knowledge, our expertise and our compassion come together to restore lives and families.”

Hart also announced the new hospital complex will be named after Dennis and Carol Troesh, who donated $100 million toward the philanthropic campaign benefiting the new hospital, Vision 2020: The Campaign for a WHOLE tomorrow.

“The new Loma Linda University Medical Center and expanded Children’s Hospital, which will be on the Dennis and Carol Troesh Medical Campus, will be an immediately recognizable icon for our region,” Hart said. “More importantly, it will exemplify the best in medical expertise and compassionate whole person care as we transform lives in this region and around the world, toward a healthier tomorrow.”

Rachelle Bussell, senior vice president of advancement, broke the news that more than $225 million has been raised toward the $360 million goal of the campaign. “Vision 2020 is the catalyst that brings together our vision for a whole tomorrow,” she said.

Kerry Heinrich, JD, CEO, of LLU Medical Center, boasted how behind the walls of the new hospital facility, new discoveries will be made that will advance medical care. Standing 16 floors and spanning a distance longer than a football field, this facility, Heinrich said, “will be an instantly recognizable icon. More importantly, it will stand as a beacon of hope for all of us, and especially those who are facing their darkest hour.”

Following the program, a group of officials and donors dipped into the red-brown earth with ceremonial golden shovels, making a historic step toward completion of the hospital in 2020.

The rest of the afternoon was a blur of the sights and sounds of happy children and their parents partaking in the activity booths, such as an obstacle course, a petting zoo and a building block station. Children could be seen potting flowers and vegetable seeds, constructing towers of their own, zipping down a bouncy slide or grabbing an apple from the healthy snack station. 

Loma Linda University Health thanks all those who attended the groundbreaking, making the day unforgettable.