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Portage Health honored with flag, recognizes servicemen staff

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     Flag Ceremony 2009 
  Members of the 1431st Engineer Company Sgt. Joseph Battisfore, Sgt. Adam Kerry, Cpl. Stephen LaCourt and Sgt. Robert Jeannotte raise a flag in front of Portage Health in Hancock December 10. The flag was previously flown in honor of Portage Health at FOB Salerno, Afghanistan in appreciation of the hospital's support of the U.S. Armed Forces. 
 Note: This was originally posted on: 12/14/2009 

HANCOCK — Portage Health held a flag-raising ceremony at its main campus in Hancock December 10 to honor staff members who have shown support for the U.S. Armed Forces.

The flag raised was given to Portage Health recently to honor its Family Birthing Center nurses. Their flexibility in arranging schedules helped nurse Joye Battisfore spend time with her husband, Sgt. Joe Battisfore, when he was recently on leave. Sgt. Battisfore, of the 1431st Engineer Company, arranged for a flag to be flown at Forward Operating Base in Salerno, Afghanistan last October in appreciation of the nurses' dedication.

"I wanted to show my gratitude and that of my fellow servicemen for those at Portage Health who help support our families while we are away," Sgt. Battisfore said. "The job we are doing is very stressful and very dangerous. To not have to worry about our families and jobs while we are gone is a great comfort."

Sgt. Battisfore presented plaques to Family Birthing Center Manager Cheryl Frankovich and Portage Health President and CEO Jim Bogan.

Also during the ceremony, Bogan recognized returning servicemen Sgt. Adam Kerry and Cpl. Stephen LaCourt, staff members who serve in the 1431st Engineer Company. Sgt. Kerry is an athletic trainer; Cpl. LaCourt is a phlebotomist.

"Our staff members are the core of our commitment to service to our community," Bogan said. "There can be no greater service to the community than that of military service to our country, and we are honored to recognize our staff members who have made that commitment."

Representatives from the offices of Sen. Carl Levin, Sen. Debbie Stabenow and Congressman Bart Stupak were in attendance, as were many community leaders from education, law enforcement and government; family and friends of the returning servicemen, and Portage Health staff members and members of its Board of Directors.

Note: This was originally posted on: 12/14/2009 

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