PORTSMOUTH-It was a very exciting start of the week for one volunteer at Southern Ohio Medical Center, after turning 99+1 years old over the weekend, Monday morning, Goldie Griffith was recognized among her fellow volunteers and staff as the latest WSAZ Hometown Hero. She found out during a surprise get-together to celebrate the occasion. Goldie has spent nearly 30 years as a volunteer at SOMC and is the first active volunteer to achieve such a distinctive milestone while serving throughout the hospital’s history.
Goldie began volunteering at SOMC in 1985, after retiring from the Ohio State Board of Cosmetology as a State Board Inspector. Goldie is currently a member of the SOMC Hope Guild, where she continues to volunteer at all fundraising sales, attends monthly business meetings, and currently serves as the Guild’s Treasurer. For many years Goldie volunteered in the SOMC Gift Gallery where staff remember her most – always offering a helping hand, and a sweet smile to the many customers and staff that visited. “As long as I have known Goldie, she has NEVER wanted anyone to know her actual age – even her application does not reflect the correct year. With this, Goldie’s volunteer friends throughout the years have continued to remind me secretly of how close Goldie is getting to 100 years of age,” states Jenny Lavender, Manager of SOMC Volunteer Services.
On February 6th,a special lunch meeting was hosted by the SOMC Hope Guild to solely wish Goldie the happiest of birthdays, which Goldie did not discover the actual purpose until her arrival, and it was at this moment that Lavender asked permission to share this amazing milestone with SOMC and to no longer keep it a secret. Yes, permission was granted with a genuine smile and appreciation. In Goldie’s words…”just tell everyone that I’m 99+1 years old – that way if they can’t do the math, well, then it’s their problem!”
Goldie is quite the entertaining and active individual, as not only does she continue to volunteer at SOMC, she continues to serve as a volunteer Usher at SSU’s VRCFA, among various other organizations throughout the Portsmouth community as well.“Yes, Goldie Griffith is amazing, and is such an inspiration to so many.I am truly fortunate to have Goldie, as not only an inspiration and volunteer – but in my life as well,” adds Lavender.