It was just five years ago when the Gowanda area experienced a damaging flood. Tri-County Hospital was one of the casualties. Because of the nature of this topic, I decided to put this week's column in an eleven verse poetic format.

It was just five years ago and still counting
August 9 and 10, '09 is firmly in mind.
The memory has a way of living within us
there is no way to leave the memory behind.

It was between dusk and the next morning sun-light
when all was quiet and still,
On a warm Sunday evening in Gowanda area
things changed with a thundering chill.

Dark clouds moved in with a fury
and lightning raced across the night-time sky;
As rain pounded down on the surface
and the winds were furiously high.

The brook waters rose with all swiftness
the creek banks could contain them no more...
And the flood moved in unmercifully
startling the people right to their core.

Many houses and businesses were affected
and damaged property was left in its wake.
Floating debris came rushing in torrents
and low spots appeared as a lake.

Tri County Hospital stood the rage of the waters
but the onslaught found a way to its core.
And the Hospital lost its battle with nature
And so Tri-County Hospital we knew ... is no more.

The Hospital left a valiant legacy of services
a quality health facility was its fame.
The service was there for all ages
the best in health care was always its aim.

And now, in its place as remediation
Gowanda Urgent Care and Medical Center is doing its part
To render quality health service for its people
with a staff giving so generously from their heart!

Patients come from Tri- County and even further
From farms, towns, Seneca Nation, and Amish Trail
All are in need of access to a full health care facility
On a twenty-four hour, seven day scale.

A broad geographical region of hopeful people,
with a feeling of critical stress...
So desperately are in need of available access
to a hospital and an emergency room, and no less.

We ask those in charge to move thoughtfully
and plan well for the long term to assure...
that the health care provided for all... will continue
and the health services provided are uniquely secure.