The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

October 2, 2013

Longtime volunteer Wanda Cook leaves gift to St. Mary’s

By Phyllis Zorn, Staff Writer
Enid News and Eagle

ENID, Okla. — Longtime hospital volunteer Wanda Cook’s final gift to St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center will continue to give in perpetuity.

A hospital volunteer for more than 11 years, Cook left a financial gift to the hospital upon her death earlier this year. With that gift, a Tree of Life was placed in the hallway of the main hospital entrance to commemorate later gifts from others in honor of their loved ones.

The Tree of Life was unveiled at a Wednesday afternoon ceremony.

Stan Tatum, CEO of St. Mary’s, told members of Cook’s family the Bible speaks often of the Tree of Life.

“The Bible talks about a tree that bears fruit,” Tatum said. “When you think about Wanda’s gift, it will bear fruit. I look forward to this tree being full and having to add some more branches on the tree.”

Jana Bean, volunteer coordinator at St. Mary’s, said Cook had worked at Champlin Petroleum and the Garfield County Court House before she started volunteering for the hospital.

“She was a joy to work with,” Bean said. “She had an infectious laugh. She definitely left a lasting impression on everyone she was around.”

Bronze, silver or gold leaves of the Tree of Life can be purchased in honor of a loved one. The leaves will be engraved with their name and a brief message.