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Morehead City family honors ECU physician with donation

Dr. Christy Isler holds Samuel Beasley. A year ago, she delivered Samuel and his twin brother, Issac. Photo by Cliff Hollis
GREENVILLE, N.C.   (Aug. 5, 2005)   —   A Morehead City couple has established a fund recognizing outstanding health care providers who work with pregnant women at the Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University. The couple chose the physician who cared for their daughter as the first award recipient.

Lockwood and Nikki Phillips have donated $15,000 to establish the Light of Hope Award, which will honor annually a member of the obstetrical team -- physician, nurse, medical student or other health care provider -- who demonstrates outstanding support for pregnant women who are hospitalized for more than two weeks before delivery.

The first recipient, Dr. Christy Isler, associate professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the medical school, was Andrea Beasley's obstetrician.

ECU made the announcement of the Phillips' donation Aug. 3, the first birthday of their grandsons, Samuel and Isaac Beasley. Their mother, Andrea Beasley, is the Phillips' daughter and was hospitalized for nine weeks during her pregnancy.

Isler shrieked with joy as she entered the reception room Wednesday and saw the Beasleys. She then ran to pick up the boys and hug them. Isler had been told to attend a reception for the departmental chairman and was overwhelmed by the true reason of the gathering.

Lockwood Phillips said during the reception honoring Isler: "She just about willed these children into the world. Today is recognition that your work is successful and appreciated."

Later he added: "Christy means so much to us. Andrea and her husband, Jared, had a previous crisis pregnancy, and Christy was determined that this pregnancy would turn out well for them."

Andrea was admitted to the hospital during the 24th week of her pregnancy. Physicians thought she might make it to 28 weeks, but the babies were born at 35 weeks and spent only about a day in the neonatal intensive care unit at Pitt County Memorial Hospital. After a brief stay at Carteret General Hospital, the boys were home with their parents six days after their birth.

Dr. Edward Newton, chairman of the ECU Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, said the fund's proceeds will be used to buy items identified by the recreation therapy department as needed for women hospitalized for two weeks or more during pregnancy. Items such as dry erase boards and laptop computers with Internet access are examples, he said.

The Medical Foundation of ECU is managing the fund. Persons interested in contributing to The Light of Hope fund should contact the Medical Foundation at (252) 744-2238.


Contact: Jeannine Manning Hutson | 252-744-2481