Until his death in 1962, St. Mary's had no greater friend and supporter than Bishop Swint of Wheeling. In June 1923, Bishop Swint invited the Pallottine Missionary Sisters to open a hospital in Huntington. When the hospital opened November 6, 1924, Bishop Swint blessed the building and placed it under the protection of Mary, the Mother of God. From that moment, the institution was known as St. Mary's Hospital. On the 50th anniversary of his ordination, Pope Pius XII conferred on Bishop Swint the title of Archbishop. The title is traditionally conferred on Bishops whose Dioceses have been declared an Archdiocese, and it is highly unusual for a Bishop of a Diocese to receive the honor.
Soltis was St. Mary's first lay administrator-a post he held from 1964 until his retirement in 1989. It was the first time in West Virginia that a layman had been appointed chief executive officer of a Catholic hospital and one of the very few instances of such departure from tradition in the United States. Under Soltis' leadership, St. Mary's grew from a modest-sized community hospital into a regional health care giant. Soltis passed away in December 2012.
In 1933, Dr. Scott opened a Crippled Children's Clinic at St. Mary's Hospital, where he cared for hundreds of children at no charge. Not confining his efforts to the clinic, he packed his medical kit in his car and set off on frequent visits to nearby rural areas to care for poor children in need. In 1941, Dr. Scott served as Chief of Staff at St. Mary's. After serving in World War II, he returned to Huntington to reestablish his orthopedic practice. He served as Chief of Orthopedics at St. Mary's from 1955-1956 and again in 1961. He retired from practice in 1967 and died in 1974.
Upon becoming St. Mary's Chief of Radiology in 1964, one of Dr. Dransfeld's first initiatives was the formation of the St. Mary's School of Radiologic Technology. Dr. Dransfeld's vision was for St. Mary's to be the first in the area to have the latest innovations in radiology, so he brought to Huntington CT (computed tomography), MRI (magnetic resonance imaging), radiation therapy, ultrasound and mammography. He served as St. Mary's Chief of Radiology until his retirement in 1996. Dr. Dransfeld passed away in 2006.
St. Mary's owes Dr. Conaty a debt that can never be repaid - a debt of gratitude for the key role he played in establishing the hospital's reputation for quality, family-centered maternity care. Dr. Conaty rose to become Chief of Obstetrics and Gynecology at St. Mary's. At one point, when other doctors had left the hospital to practice elsewhere, he held the hospital's obstetrics and gynecology department together as a one-man operation, working around the clock until new doctors could be recruited. Dr. Conaty also gave his time every Wednesday for 40 years at the hospital's indigent clinic for OB/GYN patients. Dr. Conaty died in 1999.
For more than 25 years, Brown was a major figure in Huntington's growth and development and was one of the best friends St. Mary's was ever fortunate enough to have. He held a number of increasingly important posts at the Chesapeake & Ohio Railway before being named Superintendent of the C&O shops in Huntington. In 1920, he left C&O to work at the new International Nickel Co. plant. From 1944 until his retirement in 1952, Brown was the plant's general manager. When St. Mary's named its first Lay Advisory Board, Brown became its chairman-a post he held until his death in 1955.
In June 1927, Dr. Beard became the first intern at St. Mary's Hospital. As the hospital's only intern, he had to work both day and night. He insisted on being called for every emergency and didn't like it when the Sisters didn't call. After serving in World War II, he returned to St. Mary's, where he was Chief of Staff in 1952. In 1947, he became Medical Director of the St. Mary's School of Nursing-a position he served in until his death in 1963.