Not All Heroes Wear Capes

by | Oct 2022

WHETHER GOOD, or bad, some of the most memorable moments of a person’s life have been inside the walls of a sterile hospital. For some people, those days are incredibly painful to reflect on or relive. Often, they are reminders of gut-wrenching moments of losing a loved one or other things, such as quality of life. Reflecting on these moments can bring feelings of significant loss, pain, anger, intense anxiety or fear, and so many other emotions to the surface.

Others might have hospital-related memories that are blissful and sweet. Parents, for example, might reminisce on those first holy moments after a precious child of theirs entered the world. Athletes might reflect on a surgery that gave them a fresh start or a few more years of play. And as a result, they are filled with gratitude upon remembering.

Regardless of where people find themselves on the vast spectrum of emotions, there seems to be one thing in common: people remember who was near and how they were made to feel as a result of the care they received. Names may come and go, and faces may slip from memory too, but when a person is well cared for, that is hard to forget. Vanderbilt Tullahoma- Harton Hospital’s hospitalist, Keith Robison, is one of those caregivers who is hard to forget. Robison is acutely aware of the needs of others. He has repeatedly taken extraordinary measures to ensure he gives his patients the best care possible.

For example, just a few weeks ago Robison risked his health and used his own personal time to help a patient in need. The woman, from Lynchburg, had been in the care of the hospital for a couple of days. She was picked up by an ambulance and admitted to the hospital. Robison recalled this story: “The lady was in her car, in the drive-thru, at a local pharmacy. She became ill enough that she just didn’t think she could go on, so she pulled her car off to the side and called 911. An ambulance came and brought her to the hospital. We admitted her. We have an amazing group of nurses at the hospital who took care of her. I was also seeing her each day, using the appropriate protective equipment. She improved over the course of a few days. However, the woman was COVID positive and still potentially contagious. Her car was at the local pharmacy, not too far from the hospital. When it came time for her to be discharged, she needed a way to get to her car. She was reluctant for her family members to help. We tried a couple of taxicab options, but they were unwilling to take her, which I understand. So I thought, well, you know, I’ve been in the room with her every day that she’s been here, so I’ll just put on the protective gear and drive her myself. I drove her to her car, and she was able to drive home. She was very appreciative.”

Photographed by Ashleigh Newnes.

Although Robison might shrug at the retelling of the specific story, it accurately speaks to his ability to recognize needs and his willingness
to meet those needs. In fact, Robison’s role as a hospitalist came as a result of his ability to see a greater need within the local medical profession sphere. He shared, “When I came to Tullahoma [in 1988], at that time, there was really no such thing as a hospitalist. So when we [other medical professionals in the community] would admit patients to the hospital, who did not have a primary physician (or at least not in our community), we had to use a call system in which we took turns caring for those patients. I personally thought that we had grown to the point that we needed a full-time hospitalist, and I believed the evidence supported that as well.”

Therefore, Robison petitioned for the local hospital to add the hospitalist program. A hospitalist, by definition, is “a doctor who provides care for patients at a hospital. They have the same education and training as a primary care doctor but specialize in providing hospital care.” Robison was foundational in helping get the program started here in Tullahoma. He became Harton Hospital’s first hospitalist in 2004.

Since that time, the hospital has only grown its team of hospitalists. Robison shared, “We’ve added team members since then, and now we have two teams of three physicians. One team is present in the hospital around the clock.” Robison continued, “Primarily, the growth was because more and more office physicians became under increasing stress trying to manage their office and take care of their hospital patients, all on the same day. So, to date, almost all primary care physicians who have outpatient offices have their hospital work done by a team of hospitalists.” Adding a hospitalist program to the hospital improves our local healthcare system significantly. Thank you, Keith Robison, for your visionary mind and daily answering the call to serve. GN

More Good News

In Other News

In Other News

THS Tennis Team Donates Old Tennis Balls to Police K-9 Unit.  You can’t teach an old dog new tricks, but you can give old tennis balls to a certified police service dog. That is exactly what...

read more
Recipes: Touchdown Favorites

Recipes: Touchdown Favorites

IT’S THAT time of year again when friends gather, jerseys are donned, and anticipation fills the air. Whether you’re an avid sports fan or simply enjoy the camaraderie, there’s one thing that can...

read more
In Other News

“In Other News”

TCS Named 2023 Best Communities for Music Education Award Winner.  FOR THE second year, Tullahoma City Schools (TSC) has been awarded the Best Communities for Music Education Award by the...

read more
Women Impacting the Community

Women Impacting the Community

"WE CAN all do more than nothing,” said Dr. Monica Blake-Beasley. As the keynote speaker for the Women Impacting the Community event held on May 9, she recalled how she learned to “fail forward.” In...

read more
Faith: “I Got You, Girl.”

Faith: “I Got You, Girl.”

IT IS the best of times; it is (sometimes) the worst of times. I have three children, ages 16, 12, and 5. It’s not lost on me how fast they grow. Now, with a child who is nearing 18, it really does...

read more
Refreshing Summer Treats Straight Out of Mama’s Cookbook.

Women of Tullahoma

JUST OVER 100 years ago, women finally received what other Americans, but not all, already had — the right to vote. Now, we have the opportunity to lift up and celebrate the groundbreaking women...

read more
Refreshing Summer Treats Straight Out of Mama’s Cookbook.

Recipes – Spread the love

MARCH 1 is National Peanut Butter Lover’s Day — a day to celebrate the rich, gooey goodness of a pantry staple. What better way to start the day than with a batch of special pancakes? Then, keep up...

read more
From the heart

From the heart

IMAGINE LIFE is a car, and our goal is to make it from one side of the country to the other. The only way to do that is by having a full tank of gas. What is the gas in our lives, as humans, that...

read more
History over and over again

History over and over again

I AM IN the middle of my third decade of life, and within the last two years, I’ve discovered something I always ignored: music from the midcentury. Life does not seem to be slowing down. Our...

read more
Refreshing Summer Treats Straight Out of Mama’s Cookbook.

Faith – ‘Just as you are’

FOR OVER 30 years, children’s television host Mister Rogers came into the homes of millions via our television sets and told each of us one of the most important things a person could say to us. “I...

read more
History over and over again

Tis the season

ALL I want for Christmas iiiiiiis…yoooooOOooooOOoouuuUUUuuu.” Can you hear it already? It’s that time of year once again. A time of year when a heated blanket feels like a hug. Every inch of the...

read more
History over and over again

Life’s short; eat dessert.

WE DUST off the artificial pumpkin decorations and pull orange and purple wreaths from storage. We pull out rakes and sweaters as the weather drops like the leaves do. The weather feels therapeutic...

read more
Refreshing Summer Treats Straight Out of Mama’s Cookbook.

Go straight to the best

TAKE A deep breath and smell the aroma of lunch cooking in the kitchen. It was a very important meal. Jesus and the 12 stopped in to visit the home of Martha and Mary, in Bethany. Through the...

read more
If you dream it, they will come.

If you dream it, they will come.

IN 1995, Susan Binkley was running a high-profile horse hotel and selling her artwork at a gallery in Nashville. Becoming the founder and president of Blue Monarch, a nonprofit for women seeking to...

read more
A stroke of opportunity

A stroke of opportunity

GIVING TULLAHOMA High School and Tullahoma Virtual Academy art students a unique opportunity to showcase their artistic talents is the Tullahoma Fine Arts Center (TFAC). The arts center will...

read more
Refreshing Summer Treats Straight Out of Mama’s Cookbook.

Someone Has Your Back

WHEN THE SMELL of warm caramel coffee lingers in the air of your vehicle on the way to work, you don’t have to think about watching your back. While not every driver on the road is aware of their...

read more
From the ground up

From the ground up

AS HE sits back in the chair to smile for a picture, he laughs. “It’s not often I’m sitting still,” he said, smiling. Just as soon as it is taken, the Tullahoma City Schools (TCS) maintenance...

read more
Making a splash!

Making a splash!

SINCE 1959, the Tullahoma Swim Club has been making a splash in the community. Over the years they have added a team at Tullahoma High School and most recently a middle school team for both East and...

read more
Being the Calm in the Storm

Being the Calm in the Storm

THICK BLACK SMOKE pours out of an old home that sits back off of a long winding road. Though the scene looks relatively calm to the naked eye, appearances can be deceiving. Inside, red, orange, and...

read more
With care and appreciation

With care and appreciation

WHEN TRAGEDY and hardship strike, we want to help. We demonstrate our love and care in various ways, but feeding those hit hard meets a basic need and fuels them to manage their situations. Few...

read more
Front Porch Fridays

Front Porch Fridays

TENNESSEE backroads are notorious for their beauty and knack for hospitality. Pick any old country road, and you’ll find good times hiding around each and every bend. Locally, if you were to take a...

read more
Refreshing Summer Treats Straight Out of Mama’s Cookbook.

Game Day Party Recipes

THE ELECTRIFYING atmosphere under Friday night lights is majorly fueled by loyal fans scattered across stadium seats. Young children with painted faces, parents with cushioned seats, and...

read more
Planning for growth

Planning for growth

THE CITY of Tullahoma is growing. Responsible for making sure that growth takes place in the correct space is Mary Samaniego. Samaniego is the planning director for the City of Tullahoma Planning...

read more
Bringing the beat to the game

Bringing the beat to the game

YOU CAN hear them before you see them. Instruments, performing in perfect unison, send an infectious sound out into the air that alerts all who hear it that the evening’s events are about to begin....

read more
An Honest Conversation

An Honest Conversation

PROVERBS 24:26 reads, “An honest answer is like a kiss on the lips.” But what kind of kiss are we talking about? Because not every kiss is enjoyable, and not every honest word is easily received....

read more
A cheerleader’s perspective

A cheerleader’s perspective

IN A SMALL TOWN, many components culminate to make Friday night football games the memorable experiences they are. The most notable element, of course, is the people. Individuals playing different...

read more
Letter From the Editor – The Women of Tullahoma

Classrooms made of steel

THE CLASSROOM is like railroad tracks. Hard workers spent years, decades—centuries even—laying the groundwork for the trains to run smoothly from coast to coast. They’re strong. And they last for...

read more
Refreshing Summer Treats Straight Out of Mama’s Cookbook.

Prepping for Back to School

IT MIGHT be one of the most exciting yet stressful times of the year, rivaling that of Christmas. It requires preparation, planning, logistics, time, and money. I’m almost sure there are military...

read more
Refreshing Summer Treats Straight Out of Mama’s Cookbook.

But, God

WITH THE first cup of steaming coffee in my hand and the stiffness still in my joints, I gently ease into my spot on the couch. A fresh, new day offers a blank page, although the to-do list in my...

read more
Refreshing Summer Treats Straight Out of Mama’s Cookbook.

Classroom Approved

THE WORDS “back to school” can stir up many different emotions. Some young parents hear “school” and are instantly filled with dread and anxiety. Leaving their wide eyed babes for the first time can...

read more
Refreshing Summer Treats Straight Out of Mama’s Cookbook.

So much more than teaching

DEFINING THE meaning of teacher requires more than Merriam-Webster; it takes a deeper look and a second glance. More than a job with a summer-long vacation, teachers are motivated by their love for...

read more
Bringing the beef

Bringing the beef

BROADENING THE public’s accessibility to local beef and produce is Farmington Local Market. The market opened to the public in April. The store is a part of Farmington Angus, a farm based in...

read more
Refreshing Summer Treats Straight Out of Mama’s Cookbook.

Making the most of every day

FOR TEACHER Sharron Woodard, her approach to the classroom is all about making the most of every single day. The Tullahoma High School (THS) marketing teacher has worked tirelessly over the last two...

read more
Good changes in industry

Good changes in industry

THE BEGINNING of the year marked a large change in the industrial community of Coffee County, as Cookeville native Stephen Crook was hired as the Coffee County Industrial Board executive director....

read more
Refreshing Summer Treats Straight Out of Mama’s Cookbook.

Beyond Victory

CHANCES ARE, if you’ve played basketball, softball, ran track, or been on the bowling team for West Middle School (WMS) or Tullahoma High School (THS) in the last 37 years, you’ve come across the...

read more
The Courtyard stage

The Courtyard stage

THIS TOWN can seem a bit off when the Tullahoma Wildcats aren’t taking the field at Wilkins Stadium on any given Friday night. It’s quiet and feels too still. We’ve all felt it, heard it, and...

read more
Letter From the Editor – The Women of Tullahoma

The Sound of Trumpets

IF YOU took a snapshot of any 10 years in our country’s history, there is a hurt we were trying to heal. The same is true today. It’s our independence that lets us correct that, to heal, and to...

read more
Refreshing Summer Treats Straight Out of Mama’s Cookbook.

The Dream Maker

WHEN VIKTOR Makela arrived in America from Finland, the Statue of Liberty welcomed him. He brought more than a few material possessions with him; he arrived with a heart filled with dreams. Makela...

read more
Refreshing Summer Treats Straight Out of Mama’s Cookbook.

Food, Fireworks & Fun

WE WELCOME a summer celebration more than ever, and Independence Day is the perfect time to gather for food, fun, fireworks, and flag-waving. There’s an event near you, so there’s no excuse for...

read more
Refreshing Summer Treats Straight Out of Mama’s Cookbook.

Freedom of fire

WHEN I was a young buck, I decided if there was a rule, I was going to break it. There have been many distinct times in my life when I have felt suffocated by others’ control, expectations, or...

read more
A Job Well Done

A Job Well Done

NATIONAL VOLUNTEER Week was recently observed April 17-23. To further mark the importance of the week, President Joe Biden declared it National Volunteer Week in a presidential proclamation to...

read more
School Lunch 101

School Lunch 101

FOR ALMOST a decade, Angela Cardwell has worked tirelessly to make sure the bellies of the Tullahoma City School (TCS) students are full and well-nourished. The director of nutrition for TCS and a...

read more
Raptor Rescue

Raptor Rescue

FOR TULLAHOMA residents Lyle and Valerie Russell, rehabilitating raptors has become a labor of love. As longtime falconers, the two have opened the Middle Tennessee Raptor Center (MTRC). According...

read more
Trusting the process

Trusting the process

THE TULLAHOMA High School (THS) girls and boys wrestling teams recently wrapped up successful seasons that included state appearances by both squads. While winning is important for the two teams...

read more
Celebrating those who impact

Celebrating those who impact

THE ANNUAL Women Impacting the Community event was held on May 17, at the Lakewood Golf and Country Club. Hosted by the Tullahoma Area Chamber of Commerce (TACC), the event celebrated the success...

read more
Refreshing Summer Treats Straight Out of Mama’s Cookbook.

Floating Vacations on Local Water

Whether it’s relaxation or adventure you’re seeking, you don’t have to look far to find it. Middle Tennessee’s waterways will refresh and restore you. A lazy float with nature’s soundtrack of...

read more
Letter From the Editor: Savoring the Summer Delights

Selfless

THE MERRIAM-WEBSTER dictionary defines the word selfless as “someone who has no concern for self, or unselfish.” As the world keeps turning, it may feel like selfless people are few and far between....

read more
Refreshing Summer Treats Straight Out of Mama’s Cookbook.

In the spirit of selflessness

WEBSTER MAY define selflessness as having no concern for self, but givers in our community give the world and our lives deeper meaning. They take to heart the well-being and care of others and place...

read more
Refreshing Summer Treats Straight Out of Mama’s Cookbook.

Do bunnies lay eggs?

Easter parades may have passed on by, but its many other traditions are alive and well. Even though the internet has changed how we watch movies, families still watch “The Ten Commandments” every...

read more
Refreshing Summer Treats Straight Out of Mama’s Cookbook.

When empty is full

AS MORNING’S first light nudged the last of the darkness, Mary Magdalene walked with heavy heart and feet along the dirt road. The garden’s birdsong and fragrant blossoms, usually welcomed,...

read more