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Medical Students Attend Memorial Service for Those Who Donated Their Bodies to Advance Science, Research and Medical Student Education

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

 Anatomical Donor Appreciation Day Proclamation

A memorial service was held on June 16, 2014, at the Springfield Hospital Center in Sykesville, MD, to honor those who donated their bodies for the advancement of science, research and medical education in Maryland. Nearly 400 family members and friends - including students of the University of Maryland School of Medicine - attended the service, which honored 595 donors.

Students typically begin working with donor cadavers during their first year of medical school. “When they go on to anatomy as a first-year medical student, that donor is their teacher,” said Ronn S. Wade, director Anatomical Services for the University of Maryland School of Medicine and director of the State Anatomy Board.

Wade said the donations are for the “public good.” The donated bodies are also used by surgeons, paramedics, EMTs and medical researchers investigating diseases such as Alzheimer’s. Those buried included the deceased whose bodies went unclaimed by family and friends, and people who could not afford a burial.

At the service, a proclamation was presented by Governor Martin O’Malley, declaring an “Anatomical Appreciation Day” in Maryland.

The annual service is organized by the State Anatomy Board and Springfield Hospital Center’s Office of Volunteer Services. During the service, friends and family were invited to grab a stone from a bucket at the front of the memorial and dedicate it to their loved one who dedicated their life to science.

Photos of this Year's Ceremony:

Watch Highlights from the 2013 Ceremony:

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