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For a few years, the star atop Saint John Hospital has been dark during the Christmas season. Last December 2021, during their regular maintenance of the radio and antenna equipment, the Kansas City Hospital Emergency Amateur Radio Team (KCHEART) volunteers took it upon themselves, at their own expense, to replace the burnt-out bulbs and perform maintenance on the star to bring it back to life. The star was once again shining atop Saint John Hospital and was greeted with much appreciation by the patients, staff, and community.

This year, the KCHEART volunteers wanted to include the hospital in the lighting of the star and hopefully a new tradition has been started.

The Saint John KCHEART volunteers dedicate countless hours and much effort to provide Saint John a critical capability should the need arise. Additionally, these volunteers have selflessly donated time, resources, and expertise to assist Providence Medical Center in upgrading its emergency response communication capabilities.

“Their behind-the-scenes dedication is much appreciated and often unrecognized,” said John Knutson, Emergency Preparedness Regional Coordinator. “ We owe them our gratitude.”

Recently, Val Lamborn, Rehabilitation Assistant, helped flip the switch for the Star Lighting Ceremony.
Rick Reichert, ARRL ARES® Communicator Level 3, Emergency Coordinator for KS Dist 4, Zone C, Leavenworth County, KS, added, “We were glad to re-light the iconic Saint John Hospital star for the 2021 holiday season. We got to do it again this year with a bit more fanfare and in the company of the great hospital staff we support.”

He added, “The star will remain lit until the first Monday of January, the 2nd, when we are there to do the monthly radio test.”