Dr. Boyd E. McCracken passed away Monday at the age of 91, leaving a legacy that includes the formation of Greenville Regional Hospital. Dr. McCracken had been recognized with many awards throughout his distinguished career, including the Greenville Chamber of Commerce Gerald Turley Memorial Award.
WGEL spoke with Greenville Mayor Alan Gaffner about the impact Dr. Boyd E. McCracken had on the City of Greenville and the surrounding area.
“The passing of Dr. Boyd E. McCracken is a great, great loss for our community,” Gaffner said. “His service, from a medical perspective, a public health perspective, and a leadership perspective has been invaluable. Certainly, his role in making Greenville Regional Hospital is very, very significant.
“He was one of the first five community leaders to meet with Mary Utlaut and take her dream and make it a reality. It is Dr. McCracken who is credited with persuading Mary Utlaut to redirect her gift. Her original donation was intended to build a nursing home in Greenville. In his one-on-one conversations with her, he expressed the need for a hospital. She was so taken by his recommendation as a practicing physician that without hesitation she said, ‘Yes, that donation should be used to build a hospital’ and Dr. McCracken then became the president of the first board of directors.
“Through his long-term family practice, he achieved recognition on the state level, on the national level, within the family practice community, and was always so humble. He was loved by his patients and loved by his community.
“We have lost a treasure and he will not be replaced. What an example he has left for those of us yet here to follow in his footsteps and to strive to serve and care for others in a way that is just cherished.”