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A long-standing appointment

Two friends observe 60 years of changes at Memorial.

George Michael and Leonard “Mo” Brizendine take their coffee breaks seriously. The two long-time friends head to Memorial almost every day to sit in the Café with a cup of hot coffee and chat about life. This isn’t new, however; George and Mo have been visiting Memorial’s Café almost every day for more than 50 years.

In 1953 Mo had a mail route, and Memorial was a convenient stop for a coffee break. Seven years later, Mo recruited George, who also carried mail, and the two began meeting at the coffee shop every day for conversation and a cup of joe.

A part of Memorial’s story.

Even in retirement, the two men make almost daily stops at Memorial.

“It’s part of my life,” Mo says. “My family and my friends all know that every morning I come here.”

The two friends have seen a lot of changes at Memorial since the 1950s, although they note that the overall transformation has been a very gradual process.

“I remember construction here and there,” Mo says. “But sitting here looking back, I realize how much things have changed right around us.”

But despite the changes, the high-quality and pleasant atmosphere has been consistent.

“I’ve never been in any business where everybody is so friendly,” George says. “These employees and volunteers are wonderful. Every time we come in, it’s nothing but smiles.”

Surrounded by good people.

“And Mr. Linneweh is a darn nice person too,” says Mo, referring to Memorial CEO Rick Linneweh. “Throughout the years he’s always kept good people around him to help come up with all these ideas—like the landscaping outside and the hospital’s relationship with the neighboring property owners.”

Says George: “We spent a good part of our lives—every day—watching this hospital grow.” He sips his coffee then adds: “Although, I should be careful—they might get after us, like our bosses did, for spending too much time here!”
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