Representatives of Bethesda Health Clinic announced the selected recipients of the Doctor Luke Society Award — oncologist Dr. Arielle Lee and retired pediatrician Dr. William Starling.
“The Doctor Luke Society honors those whose professional and personal lives reflect Saint Luke’s commitment to respect all persons, his concern for the poor and his hope for God’s mercy and forgiveness for all,” reads the written release.
Dozens of East Texas physicians have been recognized since the award began in 2004, Dr. English said.
“It truly is an honor, and I’m very appreciative of the people of the Bethesda Clinic,” said Dr. Lee, who has been practicing in Tyler since 1988.
While some people may think that specializing in caring for cancer patients would be heartbreaking, Dr. Lee calls it “inspiring,”
“People do so much better than they did 20 years ago,” she said. “We get very close to our patients, because it’s an intense process. They teach us not only what they need, but how to do things better.”
“A big positive is that you get to see generations,” he said. “I have patients who I’ve taken care of, and their children, and their children’s children. That’s really rewarding and very gratifying. … Often they don’t want to go to another doctor when they become an adult. … I had one patient who knocked on my back door in his military uniform for a check-up!”
Friends, family, peers and patients donate funds to the Doctor Luke Society Endowment of the Bethesda Foundation to name the honorees each year.
This year Dr. Lee’s naming sponsors are Dr. Paul Arnold; East Texas Medical Center Regional Health Care System; Dr. and Mrs. Craig Harrison; Mr. Richard and Dr. Heidi McKellar; Mr. Anthony and Dr. Shanna Meads; Mr. and Mrs. Byron Meads; Mr. and Mrs. Tim Meads; and Tyler Hematology Oncology, PA.
Dr. Starling’s naming sponsors are Dr. and Mrs. Harold Cameron; Mr. and Mrs. Vernon Faulconer; Mr. and Mrs. Bob Irwin; Mrs. Lanier Richey; and Mr. and Mrs. Tom Shoemake.