Titans Alumni Spread Christmas Cheer to Families, Patients at Saint Thomas Midtown Hospital 


NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- With the holiday season in full swing, Titans alumni Casey Cramer, Reynaldo Hill, Chris Hope, Brad Hopkins, Neil O'Donnell and Chris Sanders put on red Santa hats, sang Christmas carols and delivered gifts to spread Christmas cheer by visiting new parents and orthopedic patients at Saint Thomas Midtown hospital. Saint Thomas Health is part of Ascension, the nation's largest Catholic and nonprofit health system.

"Each fall, we enjoy visits from the Titans and our patients get to share in that," said Donna Darnell, Director of Nursing at Saint Thomas Health. "The Christmas visit is especially exciting because we add the festivity of caroling. The patients are so excited when the Titans come to visit because they know they'll get some Titans memorabilia and get special photos with their newborn and some of the players."

More moms trust Saint Thomas Women's Care to deliver their babies more than any other hospital in the state of Tennessee. The Women's Care facilities was recently renovated to improve the experience for the thousands of families who deliver with Saint Thomas Health each year. New and enhanced Women's Care amenities at Saint Thomas Midtown Hospital include:

  • The Birthing Center – Nashville's first in-hospital natural birthing facility
  • Renovated, spacious labor and delivery rooms
  • New premium post-partum suites
  • A new Family Learning Center
  • Tennessee Titans Fan Zone Family Waiting Area*
  • Mommy & Me Boutique

Saint Thomas also underwent a $25 million project renovating 94,000 square feet of space on the 8th floor of the Saint Thomas Joint Replacement Institute. This resulted in eight dedicated operating rooms that are larger and more appropriate for advanced total joint replacement procedures, leading to the best outcomes for patients. The final result brings Middle Tennessee patients a personalized experience.

"We are excited the Titans are going to visit our patients and bring them lots of cheer on the eighth floor of our orthopedic institute," said Ashley Bush, Clinical Director at Saint Thomas Health.

"All the patients had a big smile on their faces and were happy to see us," said O'Donnell. "Let's be honest, no one wants to be in the hospital over the holidays, but every room I went in, everyone had a big smile."

"Making these hospital visits is about connecting with the people," said Hopkins. "They have situations going on where they need to be on the mend. When you look at the experience of the players that used to play and taking that extra step to make them feel comfortable is what it's about. It's the holiday season and about being festive. It's about having those smiling faces that are happy that you are there and it's very rewarding."

"Our community knows we have a tight partnership with the Titans. The patients we have look forward and hope they are here on the day of the Titans visit. It's a partnership we value, and our patients enjoy," said Darnell.

There is a selflessness and sensibility not found anywhere else except by those who care for people when they are at their most vulnerable. Since we are in the season of giving thanks, it's a good time to deliver a dose of gratitude to the physicians, nurses and staff for the skill, care, and compassion they provide.

There's no doubt a hospital is one of the last places most families hope to find themselves over the Christmas holiday. The staff at Saint Thomas Hospitals continue to help families of Christmases past and present continue a tradition aimed at making the stay a little more joyous.


In Tennessee, Ascension's Saint Thomas Health operates nine hospitals in addition to a comprehensive network of affiliated joint ventures, medical practices, clinics and rehabilitation facilities that cover a 68-county area and employ more than 8,000 associates. Across the state, Saint Thomas Health provided more than $92 million in community benefit and care of persons living in poverty in fiscal year 2017. Serving Tennessee for 15 years, Ascension is a faith-based healthcare organization committed to delivering compassionate, personalized care to all, with special attention to persons living in poverty and those most vulnerable. Ascension is the largest non-profit health system in the U.S. and the world's largest Catholic health system, operating more than 2,600 sites of care – including 151 hospitals and more than 50 senior living facilities – in 22 states and the District of Columbia. Visit www.sthealth.com.

With the holiday season in full swing, Titans alumni players put on red Santa hats, sang Christmas carols and delivered gifts to spread Christmas cheer to patients at Saint Thomas Midtown hospital. (Photos: Lynne McCracken)

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