On April 10, Brattleboro Memorial Hospital hosted a dedication ceremony of BMH’s new lobby in honor of long-time Brattleboro residents Roland and Harriet Fisher.
The new “Roland and Harriet Fisher Lobby” recognizes the couple’s final and generous gift in support of BMH’s $3.5 million “Doorway to Exceptional Care” Capital Campaign for the new Emergency Department and front entrance at the hospital.
The guests were welcomed by BMH Board Chairman Peter Carvell. Following brief remarks about the renovation and the improved facilities, BMH President and CEO Steven R. Gordon, introduced the featured speaker Arthur Magnaghi. A past BMH Board chairman and the former owner and president of DeWitt Beverage, Magnaghi was a close friend of the Fisher family. Also present were local friends and neighbors of the Fishers as well as family members who traveled long distances to attend the dedication ceremony.
Magnaghi shared some of the Fishers’ history and spoke of their involvement in the Brattleboro community. Harriet Adam Fisher was born in Brattleboro in 1915, the daughter of Frederick and Haddie Bruce Adam. In 1940, she married Roland John “R.J.” Fisher, who was born in 1915 in Rochester, NH, to John and Ora Vachon Fisher.
Together for more than 72 years, Harriet and Roland started and nurtured several successful businesses in Brattleboro, including the Royal Diner on Main Street, the “House of Flowers” apartment building next door to the diner, and Willy’s Jeep Dealership in town. Perhaps most memorably, they owned the R.J. Fisher Real Estate Agency, which grew to be one of the most successful real estate firms in southern Vermont.
Harriet died this past January at the age of 98, and Roland died in February 2012, at the age of 96.
According to Magnaghi, “All of us here in the Brattleboro community and our region can be very proud of our new state-of-the-art Emergency Department, striking new Canopied Entrance, and our new impressive Lobby. I know that Roland and Harriet would be proud, as well. This wonderful new addition to our hospital will serve our patients well for years to come.”
Upon the conclusion of Magnaghi’s comments, there was an unveiling of an oil painting of Harriet and Roland Fisher, which will grace the new lobby. It was painted by artist Kyle Stuckey, who traveled from Nevada to be present at the dedication ceremony.