Cheers to Manatee Memorial Hospital's amazing volunteers

Manatee Memorial Hospital is not alone in depending on a host of volunteers for various but essential public services. Their remarkable contributions stood out at Thursday's Manatee Memorial Foundation Auxiliary Celebration Luncheon.

Some 400 members strong, the volunteer force raised more than $200,000 that they delivered to 27 social service agencies in grants.

In describing the special role volunteers play, the hospital's chief executive, Kevin DiLallo, stated: "We saw 6,000 patients in 2014, and many of them have other needs like housing, food and services, and I am proud to say that our volunteers help provide for them."

Just as incredible, these volunteers logged some 75,000 hours of service over the year. Doing the math, that equals 1,440 hours per week every week of the year -- the equivalent of 36 people working 40-hour weeks.

Volunteer extraordinaire Connie Lester served as the most valuable play with 20,000 hours -- amounting to 38 hours per week. The next five finishers spent 10,000 hours or more of their time in this generous endeavor.

Cheers to one and all. The hospital, the patients and the social service agencies benefit from your efforts.