Gordon Hospital Emergency Medical Services Director Courtney Taylor was awarded the prestigious Georgia Hospital Heroes Award at the Georgia Hospital Association’s (GHA) Annual Meeting on Nov. 13. Taylor, who was one of only 10 individuals to receive the award, was recognized for his years of service to the hospital as well as his rescue efforts during a tornado event.
As the director of Gordon Hospital Emergency Medical Services, Taylor oversees all emergency personnel and the use of emergency vehicles and equipment for the hospital. Under his leadership, the department has thrived and was recently recognized as the Region One EMS Service of the Year for maintaining a high performance level and spotless record.
Not only do Taylor and his team support the community through EMS services, but they also give back through their yearly Help Make a Kid Smile Christmas toy drive. Even during tough economic times, they raised more than $18,000 last year to ensure that all children in the area have a toy on Christmas morning.
One event in particular illustrates the heroic qualities of Taylor. In January 2013, an EF3 tornado hit Gordon County, destroying nearly 300 homes in its path. When Taylor learned that the storm had traveled into the county, he drove straight into its path to see if anyone might need help. His instincts were right. He, along with off-duty firefighter Mike Young, came across what was left of a home. They heard bystanders yelling for help. Buried under the debris, along the edge of the highway, was a 79-year-old woman calling for her two-year-old great grandson. As the tornado had approached her home, she and her grandson had taken shelter in a closet. Moments later, they both lay along the major highway under what had been her home.
Within minutes, Taylor and Young found the little boy. Taylor determined that both victims were in dire need of medical assistance and called for additional help. Another EMS truck arrived and Taylor and Young were able to lift the debris off the young boy and were able to rescue his great-grandmother. Both were transported to the hospital and, after spending some time there, recovered fully.
“Courtney Taylor is an example of a hero in more ways than one,” said GHA President Earl V. Rogers. “Not only did he save lives in a disastrous event, but he also is an inspiration to everyone at his hospital and in his community. He is a most-deserving recipient of this award.”
About Gordon Hospital
Gordon Hospital, a member of Adventist Health System, is a 69-bed acute care hospital located in Calhoun, Georgia. In 2013, Georgia Trend magazine named Gordon Hospital the number one small hospital in the state of Georgia. Gordon Hospital offers a wide range of inpatient and outpatient services and operates general and specialty physician practices. The hospital is consistently recognized for its quality and safety scores and has earned an A rating from The LeapFrog Group, a consumer healthcare site, which monitors hospital safety nationwide.
Established in 1929, GHA is the state’s largest trade organization of hospitals and health systems providing education, research and risk management services to its more than 170 hospital and health system members. Additionally, it represents and advocates health policy issues benefiting Georgia’s citizens before the state legislature and U.S. Congress as well as before regulatory bodies.