Because of my experience at Mount St. Mary’s, I want to recognize Dr. Largo and all of my caregivers for the great work they do. Allow me to share my story with you.

We were celebrating St. Patrick’s Day at the school where I have taught for 30 years. Unfortunately, I had anything but the luck of the Irish that day. I had been having abdominal pain, and testing by my doctor didn’t really find anything. I was still able to work and get around. But then, that day at school, I received a call in my classroom that I needed to get to the hospital right away – there was a problem with my appendix!

I drove immediately to Mount St. Mary’s where my husband met me. Living in Lewiston, we knew the hospital and our children had been cared for in the ER there a couple of times. It was a natural choice. But still, I was worried and nervous as you can imagine. We were directed to the office of Dr. Donald Largo, a general surgery specialist affiliated with Mount St. Mary’s.  After an assessment, he sent me to the ER to be admitted to have my appendix removed before it burst. By now it was evening and he had been working all day, but Dr. Largo said he would meet me at the hospital and he would perform the surgery as quickly as possible.

I had never met Dr. Largo before. He was so kind and calming, I automatically trusted him and knew everything would be all right, and my husband agreed. We learned that Dr. Largo has nearly 40 years of experience, which was good to know, but it was his bedside manner, his kindness, that really stood out. In an emergency situation, I think that is just as important to a patient.

Dr. Largo did the surgery that evening and I spent a few days in at Mount St. Mary’s. Dr. Largo was supported by a team of nurses and an anesthesiologist who were equally wonderful. As an educator, I know how hard teachers work. I saw the same commitment in the nurses at Mt. Saint Mary’s. It’s a tough job and they deserve all the credit we can give them, especially as we still battle the pandemicMy surgery took place just as strict protocols were put in place at hospitals across New York.  I could not have felt safer during my time at Mount St. Mary’s Hospital. 

I went home and due to COVID, we did a virtual follow up with Dr. Largo. After that, he called me a couple of times – himself, not a staff member – just to see how I was doing. I remember thinking how considerate that was.

I would like to ask you to join me in giving credit where credit is certainly due. Please consider showing your support of your special caregivers with a donation to Mount St. Mary’s Hospital Foundation. Visit their website to make your secure donation online at Any and every contribution is appreciated. If you have had your own great experience with a caregiver at Mount St. Mary’s Hospital, this is your chance to honor the great care they provide. Simply fill out the Angel of Care form to share your story about a caregiver.

With my sincere thanks,

Lori Spanbauer