Hospital foundation raises more than $23,000

Windi and Chris Deiter at the Blue Mountain Healthcare Foundation annual dinner and auction at the Elks Lodge in John Day on Oct. 20. Chris won the contest for best male costume.

The Blue Mountain Healthcare Foundation raised more than $23,000 at its annual dinner and auction at the John Day Elks Lodge on Oct. 20, foundation director Jena Knowles said.

When combined with more than $8,000 raised during the foundation’s annual golf scramble this summer and other funds built up by the foundation, the money will go toward a $75,000 call system at Blue Mountain Hospital. The system will connect patient rooms and the emergency rooms to the nurse station, Knowles said.

About 150 people attended the annual dinner, many in costume. Funds were raised by ticket sales, a silent auction, table sponsors and a reverse auction held at the end of the night.

The reverse auction raised $2,500 for a much-needed $5,000 vein finder, Knowles said. The foundation will cover the rest of the cost of the device, which illuminates veins to help medical staff draw blood or install intravenous equipment.

“We are truly amazed at the generosity of our local businesses and this incredible community,” Knowles said. “We had some really great auction items this year and a record turnout. Thank you, Grant County.”

Steve and Cherry Hill, dressed as ancient Egyptian royalty, won the award for best costumed couple. Dr. Raffaella Betza, dressed as Mystique from the X-men stories, won the award for best costumed female. Chris Deiter, dressed as a chained beast, won the award for best costumed male.

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