Going on a bear hunt

Springfield | August 3, 2017
A hospital security guard goes on the prowl for a teddy bear to comfort a young ED patient

One night while security guard, Steve Harmon, was making his rounds at PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Medical Center-University District in Eugene, Oregon, he noticed a young patient in the emergency department who forgot to bring something very important—her teddy bear.

The youngster was bearing up well without her cuddly toy until another young patient came in with a stuffed animal in tow. This caused the tyke without a toy a great deal of emotional stress as she could no longer put her forgotten bear out of her mind while the other child was in plain view, playing with his. 

That’s when Harmon went on the prowl for something to comfort the teddy-less child.

He thought he might find one in the hospital’s lost and found so he checked with Christina Barker, supervisor of Environmental Services. Nope. No bear there.

The two of them did a little digging through the department’s Christmas decorations and found something that would work beautifully.

Barker said Harmon’s thoughtful, caring act for this patient was not on his “usual list of responsibilities” to keep the hospital’s patients, visitors and caregivers safe, but it did help a child in the ED feel more secure. “I thought it was so kind of him to do this,” she said.