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Groundbreaking for $12 million Baum Family Surgical Center celebrated

The bright, sunny day Wednesday matched the mood of the people who gathered at Spectrum Health Pennock Hospital for the groundbreaking of the Baum Family Surgical Center.

The event was filled with thanks to the hundreds of people, indeed the entire Barry County community, who helped make the facility a reality.


The crowd was welcomed by Spectrum Health Pennock Board Chair, Nathan Tagg, who noted the Spectrum Health Foundation Pennock had pledged $8 million to get the state of the art facility “off the ground.” Eighty four percent of the goal of an additional $4.5 million has been raised for the 19,000 square foot, $12 million state of the art center.                                                    


Tagg was followed by remarks from Angela Ditmar, president of Spectrum Health Pennock, Andrew Parsons, MD, chief of staff and chief of surgery, David J. Tossava, mayor of Hastings, Janine Dalman, executive director of the Capital Campaign, Maggie Coleman and Dan King, campaign co-chairs and donors David Baum, Earlene Baum and Jim DeCamp


Special appreciation went to the City of Hastings for its cooperation and the project’s Steering Committee, Spectrum Health Foundation Board of Trustees, Capital Campaign Committee and Spectrum Health Pennock Hospital Board of Trustees for their work.


Dave Baum, spoke for his father Larry, who couldn’t be there. He added a light note when quoting his father’s response to the question of if he would still support the hospital when it became Spectrum Health Pennock.


Noting his father sometimes didn’t have much of a filter, he said Larry said: “I don’t give a d*** what name is on the side of the building…I just want quality health care…why wouldn’t I support them to keep them in the community?”                                                                                                  

“We love Hastings,” Earlene Baum said. “We’re fortunate to be able to help improve local health care.”




King, co-chair of the capital campaign, spoke of the several times he used the services at Pennock Hospital in the past and predicted that judging by the way his two grandsons, 2 and 5, fight he was sure they would “end up there at times, too.”


Dalman credited the late Mike O’Mara for his nine-year tenure on the Foundation Board, the last three as chair. His leadership and dedication and capital campaign mentor were invaluable, as well as with the integration process with Spectrum Health, she said.



Speaking for the city, Tossava said, “This is an example of what we can do together.”


“In 1952, Pennock Hospital opened its state-of-the-art operating         

room, giving Barry County residents access to leading-edge care,

close to home,” a statement on the agenda read.


“Today, we break ground on the Baum Family Surgical Center,

which will expand the depth and breadth of care available right

here in our community.


“The innovative Baum Family Surgical Center will increase efficiency and provide access to laboratory, imaging and surgical procedures in one convenient location.


“From ease of access with a separate entrance close to parking to advanced technology, patients and their loved ones will have peace of mind as they approach what is already a stressful time.


“The Baum Family Surgical Center will provide a new level of

health care, positioning Spectrum Health Pennock for the future

of surgical care delivery and reaffirming our commitment to

improve health, inspire hope and save lives.”




Photos: (upper left) A few of the people who worked to make the Baum Family Surgical Center a reality turn over a shovelful of dirt to signify the groundbreaking for the new facility. They are, from left, Jeff Mansfield, Jim DeCamp, Katie DeCamp, Maggie Coleman, Margaret DeCamp, Earlene Baum, Dave Baum, Nathan Tagg, Dan King, Dave Tossava, Noah Schneider, Andrew Parsons, Angela Ditmar, Steve Marzolf and Tod Champion. Dave Potter is in back.


(upper right) Board Chair of Spectrum Health Pennock Nathan Tagg welcomes guests to the official groundbreaking of the surgical center.


(middle left) Hastings Mayor Dave Tossava addresses the crowd at the groundbreaking Wednesday.


(middle right) Dave Baum, standing in for dad Larry Baum, Earlene Baum and Jim DeCamp added personal stories about Spectrum Health Pennock Hospital.


(middle left) Hastings Community Development Director Dan King and Maggie Coleman, campaign co-chairs, praised what the people of Barry County do when they decide to.


(middle right) Spectrum Health Pennock President Angie Ditmar thanked the people who worked so hard on the project. She recognized former President Sheryl Lewis Blake for leaving her “a great legacy.”


(lower left) Former Spectrum Health Pennock President Sheryl Lewis Blake chats with guests at the groundbreaking for the new surgical center.


(lower left) The tent shielding guests from the sun was filled for the ceremony denoting the building of the new surgical center. The tent is where the new facility will be.




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