Remembering Elizabeth Catlett

We received an email last weekend from the granddaughter of Elizabeth Catlett. She wanted to share her thanks with two very special hospital employees for their work on behalf of her grandmother. In December 2011, Humboldt General Hospital dedicated a memorial to employees who have died while in service to our facility. The little memorial site, located to the east of the Emergency Department entrance on Mizpah Street, is actually named for Elizabeth, a Humboldt General Hospital nurse who was murdered at HGH in 1951. Elizabeth, 60, was beaten to death by hospital patient Domingo Echeverria. Thomas Robbins, 85, also a hospital patient, was killed by Echeverria as well using the same 2.5-foot pipe, which the man had detached from a wash basin in the bathroom. Elizabeth had been a member of the hospital staff for approximately nine years. A bench in the garden has specifically been dedicated to her memory. The garden also includes a stone pedestal which holds the engraved names of other employees who have died while in service to the hospital. It was sympathy for Elizabeth's sacrifice that prompted hospital employees Marlaine Marden and Marsha Foreman to approach HGH CEO/Administrator Jim Parrish regarding a memorial. That spurred plans to construct the site, which were included with the first HGH medical office building expansion in 2010. Marlaine and Marsha have felt a kinship with Elizabeth Catlett ever since learning about her untimely death. She died alone; they don't want her to ever have to be alone again, and so they have been tireless in their efforts to remember her. Elizabeth's granddaughter, Bonnie Catlett Sell, lives in Hawaii with her husband, Doug. She said Winnemucca is a long way from Hawaii and she might never make it this way in her lifetime. Still, she wanted to share her gratitude to Marlaine and Marsha for simply remembering a woman who was special to her. We thank them, too. They are the epitome of going above and beyond, and we are very proud.