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Dec 10, 2012 10:57 AMPublication: The East Hampton Press

Southampton Hospital Volunteer Steps Down After Three Decades

Dec 11, 2012 5:44 PM

For just about every Monday for more than three decades, a smiling Marjorie Ludlow greeted Southampton Hospital patients at the first-floor admitting desk where she volunteered.

“I’d see a lot of people that I knew and that was nice,” Ms. Ludlow, who turns 95 on January 12, recalled at her Bridgehampton home overlooking family farmland featuring a pumpkin patch. She would also see a lot of people she would not otherwise have met, she added.

Following a recent fall and resulting kneecap injury, the still-spry Ms. Ludlow decided to hang up her pink volunteer’s jacket this fall and step away from her weekly hospital duties.

On Friday, the longtime volunteer explained how a Bridgehampton friend, Edith Esp, had suggested she lend a hand at the hospital all those decades ago and that she stuck with it ever since.

She touched on how the hospital changed over time. Adding valet parking on Meeting House Lane was a good idea because parking spots are scarce, she said. But the new Emergency Department, revamped a few years ago, is more “complicated” now, so she would try to avoid it. “I was afraid I’d get lost,” she said, with a laugh.

Ms. Ludlow, a Yonkers native, moved to Bridgehampton in 1948 upon marrying Gurden Ludlow of the local farming family.

The couple’s four children were all born at Southampton Hospital: Claire Arnold, now 63, a retired speech therapist in Denver; Harry Ludlow, 62, who still farms and runs a local farm stand in the summers; Arthur Ludlow, 61, who also still lives in Bridgehampton and who makes cheese, and Betsy Johnsen, 59, a caterer who lives in Wilbraham, Massachusetts.

Her husband, Gurden, died in 2001 at the age of 81.

Prior to volunteering at the hospital, Ms. Ludlow, a mathematics major, worked for an actuary company in Manhattan before becoming a secretary in the Chrysler building for the Ethyl Corporation. She did not work after her marriage at age 30, but did do some bookkeeping for Dr. Hugh Halsey, an obstetrics and gynecology doctor in Southampton Village, when her children were young.

Hospital staff said Ms. Ludlow was “always sweet” and the “biggest help.”

She “only needs to be shown something once before she is off and running … a real firecracker,” hospital Spokeswoman Marsha Kenny said in a statement issued by the hospital.

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congratulations !! 7500 hours, WOW !!
By coxie1 (37), southampton on Dec 10, 12 5:58 PM
Thank you.
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Dec 10, 12 7:18 PM
Thank you for your many, many years of service!
By Robert I Ross (250), Hampton Bays on Dec 11, 12 10:55 AM