We Are On This Earth Together
By Dennis Byrd Jr., Busboy/Owner of The Spot, Seawall and 32nd Street, Galveston, TX
Last Spring I attended a fundraiser mixer for the Hispaniola Medical Charity organized by my surgeon friend Dennis Gore. At this reception, my friend challenged me to accompany and help with their next mission trip to the Dominican Republic. He said it would be truly altruistic and a unique opportunity to be immersed in another culture; in total contrast to my usual hedonistic vacations to Las Vegas. To my mother and father’s astonishment, I decided to go on my first ever foreign medical mission. For those who know me, it will come as no surprise that on my arrival to the airport, I took command of the mission, especially the logistics of getting nearly 50 trunks of medical supplies on the plane, through customs, and onto the waiting “chicken bus” for our three hour ride from Santo Domingo airport to the El Buen Samaritano Hospital in La Romana, DR. While continuing in my leadership role, I supervised the four surgeons, anesthesiologists and several nurses for the 84 surgical procedures done over the next week and the countless dental procedures done by the two dentists. While of course kidding about supervising the surgeons, I did really help out; escorting patients to and from their OR and recovery rooms, “go-fering” supplies and even holding a retractor now and then. It was, as my friend had said, a week of hard work, long hours on my feet but a feeling at the end of each day that I was one of the good guys, truly helping someone in need, really making a positive difference in the world.
The charity work continues with another mission trip to the Dominican Republic planned for this coming fall. While team members are financially responsible for their own transportation, lodging and meals, the mission is in dire need of medical supplies, medications, and anesthesia and surgical equipment. To help purchase these supplies, the charity has organized several fund raisers, the next one being in the Rum Shack at The Spot from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m., April 25th. There will be rum tasting provided by Brugal, the featured rum of the Dominican Republic and appetizers provided by Francisco “Paco” Vargas of Rudy and Paco.
Please join us and help support this medical mission charity. Donations will be greatly appreciated.
For information call Dennis Gore at 409-771-7462 or visit www.hispaniolamedicalcharity.org.