Tidioute is the little town that could.
In less than two years, several community members banded together to raise funds, write grants, partner with medical leaders and plan the construction of the Tidioute Area Health and Dental Center (TAHDC). All the hard work came to fruition Friday morning with the ribbon-cutting and grand opening of the new building.
TAHDC Board President Bob Schwab referenced the children's story "The Little Train That Could" in the grand opening ceremony.
Grand Opening of the new Medical Center in Tidioute
"Tidioute is that little train," he said. "It did what everyone said couldn't be done."
The small town has been without a medical center since the closure of the former Tidioute Health Center, an affiliate of Titusville Hospital, in September 2007. In late 2008, the TAHDC board of directors and its committees partnered with Warren General Hospital and Chris Darling of Crone's Drug Store in Warren to begin the process of bringing health care back to the community.
Schwab referred to the new structure, located on Main Street across from Buckingham Street, as a "new resident."
Times Observer photo by Lydia Cottrell
New health center
Members of the Tidioute Health and Dental Center board and committees cut the ribbon on the newly- finished building on Friday. From left are Cindy Lindemuth, Mike Knight, Roberta Knight, Rachel Watson, Sandy Jamieson, monetary donor David Byers, Jack Anderson, Sherry Williams, Sandi Ringel, Cindy Paulmier, Nancy Schwab, Bob Schwab, Ann Snavley, Warren General Hospital CEO John Papalia, Wade Adams, Walt Snavley and pharmacist Chris Darling.
"It's success is entirely up to you," he told the crowd. "Without your support it will not be able to grow, succeed and prosper."
Medical and dental services will be provided by Warren General Hospital.
"I think what were doing as a hospital is doing what we're supposed to do in promoting community health," said John Papalia, CEO of WGH.
Papalia introduced the staff including Dr. Lee Denlinger and Dr. Stanley Sivak, who will be providing medical services; and Dr. Ted Rockwell, who will be providing dental services at the center.
He went on to express gratitude to the community and volunteers.
"Just thank you," he said. "You really have a unique community here and the ability to get things done."
Darling, owner of the new Darling's Tidioute Health Mart and Pharmacy located in the health center, took the podium to congratulate the community and promised hard work.
"Together with Warren General Hospital we'll deliver state of the art health care to this community," Darling said.
He added, "I feel truly blessed for this opportunity and we will not let you down."
Expressions of thanks and gratitude continued as Schwab credited the board and the committee members for the end result.
"They've gone the yard to make this community project possible," he said.
The grand-opening ceremony and ribbon cutting was preceded and followed by tours of the building. Dignitaries, residents and students from Tidioute Community Charter School viewed the new building and equipment.
"This is a wonderful day for Tidioute," remarked State Rep. Kathy Rapp.
The project was funded through private donations as well as public grants. Major support was received from the Community Foundation of Warren County, Growing Greener II grant funds and several local businesses.