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Fatal Houma Accident Involving Chabert Staff Prompts Fundraising Efforts at Lallie Kemp Medical Center

Independence Numerous acts of kindness at Lallie Kemp Regional Medical Center in Independence will help ease the suffering of grieving families a hundred miles away in Houma.

On Friday, October 15, four Leonard J. Chabert Medical Center employees were in a tragic traffic accident. Lalisa Robinson and Samantha Marcel were killed. Sandra (Kay) Brunet and Kara James received severe injuries. All four worked in the Chabert Medical Records Department. They had gone out to lunch for Boss's Day when the accident occurred.

Employees of a public hospital are always mindful of the less fortunate. Now, at Chabert, tragedy has entangled four of its families in emotional, financial and personal turmoil. Families must make up for lost income. The consequences are monumental. Reaching out from the Northshore all the way down to Terrebonne Parish, Lallie Kemp employees are rallying to help the affected families at their sister hospital in Houma. Both hospitals are part of LSU Health.

Lallie Kemp has developed more than a month of fundraising activities, throughout November and into December, including a BBQ chicken dinner that the Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff's Office will cook on Friday, December 3, at the hospital for up to 500 people. It's open to the public, with the hospital pre-selling tickets for $5 each.

The Lallie Kemp Foundation and Circle of Care organization are assisting with purchasing the food for the BBQ.

Lallie Kemp employees have also had the opportunity to pay a dollar each to wear blue jeans on "Blue Monday," every Monday between November 8 and December 13. The hospital held a bake sale on November 19 and will hold another on December 3. Other activities are in the works and include the assistance of AmSan Janitorial and Maintenance Specialists, which is donating a top-of-the-line vacuum cleaner to raffle.

Robinson, Marcel, Brunet and James were people who make society run, working daily, sustaining their families, contributing to their community.

With Chabert since 2008, Lalisa Robinson was a valued and talented employee. A key member of the medical record coding team, she was promoted in 2009 to Department Supervisor due to her strong leadership skills. Before her employment with Chabert, Ms. Robinson worked in New Orleans in the Coding Department of the Interim LSU Public Hospital for seven years. She was an exceptional employee, very well liked and appreciated by all. A dedicated worker, she was always the first to volunteer for extra assignments, inspiring everyone with her positive spirit.

Samantha Marcel, a loyal Chabert employee, worked for 13 years in the medical records department before her recent transfer to the coding department. She continuously advanced her education in computer technology, earning a 4.0 grade point average at Delta College. A calm, efficient employee, she was always offering new ideas to improve the hospital. At Chabert, Mr. John Burt, the representative for Blind Citizen Services and manager of the hospital snack shop, has sponsored two lunches for Chabert employees and the community and donated proceeds to the Chabert Employee Assistance Fund, which the hospital developed to assist the families.

Earl K. Long Medical Center, in Baton Rouge, another LSU hospital, is also pitching in with a Bake Sale and six "Blue Mondays." Employees can pay a dollar each to wear anything blue on the Monday they pay.

Anyone can donate. Make checks payable to the Chabert Employee Assistance Fund, and mail them to Leonard J. Chabert Medical Center, 1978 Industrial Blvd., Houma, LA 70363. Attn: Administration Office.

To buy tickets for the BBQ dinner or raffle, call (985) 878-1300.