Shriners for Children Medical Center Holds Dedication Ceremony

Joy Cho, Imperial Potentate Chris Smith, Supervisor Kathryn Barger, Chairman of the Board of Trustees Jerry Gantt, hospital CEO Lou Lazatin and Robert Cho dedicated the new Shriners for Children Medical Center.

After 65 years of giving children and families specialized medical care, Shriners Hospitals for Children–Los Angeles will be moving to a new state-of-the-art medical center located in Pasadena. Shriners for Children Medical Center is the first facility in the Shriners Hospitals for Children network to be created specifically to meet the demands of the rapidly changing health care system. Opening summer 2017, the new medical center represents a significant departure from the concepts that define traditional hospitals.
To celebrate the transition, the Los Angeles Shriners Hospital leadership, national and local patient ambassadors alongside the California Grand Lodge, Imperial Board and the chairman of the board performed a traditional cornerstone ceremony. A Masonic cornerstone ritual may be the only Masonic ritual that the public will ever see conducted. The dedication ceremony is the symbolic laying of the cornerstone which supports the entire structure.
“It’s a culmination of a 10-year effort for us to build a new facility and we bring a $100 million project to this community with the desire to help kids in need and to see that no child goes untreated,” said Chairman of the Board David Doan. “It is a fantastic feeling to have finally accomplished that and know that in this hospital, thousands of children will have their lives changed for the good by the work of our doctors.”
Members of the board presented a time capsule that contained several newspapers from the original dedication ceremony of the Los Angeles Shriners Hospital back in 1952. Along with these items from 1952, there were new items in the time capsule including photos, memorabilia and patient stories from our Los Angeles patient ambassadors and national patient ambassadors.
Rachel Roitman, Los Angeles patient ambassador, explained how she never felt afraid or discouraged thanks to the care she received from her surgeons and staff. “Over the past 16 years of my life, I’ve spent countless days at Shriners Hospital receiving IV treatments having physical therapy, clinic appointments and surgeries with hospital stays. I’ve only recently realized how fortunate I am to have such a positive experience as a person with a chronic disability. I’m amazed when I hear stories of kids being frightened or depressed when they’re in the hospital, as that was the farthest thing from my reality when I was at Shriners Hospitals for Children–Los Angeles.”
Rachel, Brock, Marius and Karolina, all patient ambassadors, placed their stories in the time capsule in hopes that when it is opened, others are made aware of what great philanthropy Shriners Hospitals for Children really is.
Shriners’ administrator closed out the ceremony by saying, “We all know children are precious and the truth is the entire medical center — this entire effort — is because of the children. The truth is that without children, our fundamental component of our mission for Shriners Hospitals for Children could not happen without children.”
Shriners Hospitals for Children-Los Angeles is a specialty hospital for orthopaedic conditions, prosthetics and orthotics, hand disorders, burn scars, and cleft lip and palate. World-class care is provided to children under age 18, regardless of the families’ ability to pay.

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