Longtime hospital supporters and community leaders, Ron and Joanne McIntire, were recognized at the Kootenai Health Foundation’s Festival of Trees Gala for donating $1 million to benefit the hospital’s east expansion. Because of their generous donation designated to women’s and children’s services, the new unit will be named the Kootenai Health McIntire Family Birth Center.
“Kootenai Health is expanding to meet the needs of our community and the Family Birth Center will care for families in new ways,” McIntire said. “We know that the McIntire Family Birth Center will positively impact the lives of families and allow for this experience to be close to home. In seeing a preview of the Family Birth Center we were touched by the thoughtful ways that families will experience the birth of a child. If the child is at risk the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit will address their needs. It is wonderful to realize that Kootenai Health seeks to meet and exceed the needs of those who live in this community.”
Ron and Joanne McIntire first moved to Hayden in 1970, opening their first supermarket, Ron’s Thrift Store, the following year. The McIntires, married for 54 years, have seven children, 23 grandchildren, and eight great-grandchildren, many of whom were born or cared for at Kootenai Health. In addition to raising a family and owning several supermarkets and convenience stores, McIntire has also served as the Mayor of Hayden for nearly 15 years.
The McIntires began supporting the hospital’s fundraising efforts through the Foundation’s Festival of Trees in 1995 by sponsoring the “Breakfast with Santa”. Since that time, McIntire’s family and company, Super 1 Foods, have sponsored the Family Raffle Tree, and served as both Patron and Grand Benefactor Tree Sponsors. Their daughters have helped decorate the trees, this year will mark their 20th year volunteering. In addition to supporting the holiday event, McIntire served on the Kootenai Health Foundation Board of Directors from 2006 to 2012, including two years as secretary and two years as chairman.
“I would like to personally thank Ron and Joanne for their dedication to supporting and growing quality health care in our region,” Jon Ness, Kootenai Health CEO, said. “The McIntire family has played a big part in our hospital’s history and their legacy of giving will always be celebrated at Kootenai.”
Outside of his time as a board member, McIntire personally experienced the need for quality health care close to his home and work. He was one of the first to undergo open-heart surgery at Kootenai. In response to the outstanding care provided to him, the McIntires provided a significant donation to Kootenai’s Heart Center.
“It is so great to see fellow community members be passionate and supportive of our hospital,” Mike Chapman, chairman of the Kootenai Health Foundation Board of Directors, said. “We can achieve so much when our community pulls together for a cause. So many lives will be touched because of the McIntire’s generous gift.”
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