THE GIFT OF SONG: From left, Diane Decker, assistant director of major gifts; Melody; and Sophie Rosenbaum, development coordinator of major gifts.
MGH is known for providing world-class health care – not necessarily for providing musical inspiration. For one patient and his family, however, it did just that.
In 2004, with the help of MGH Vincent Obstetrics and Gynecology physicians Jan Shifren, MD, and Laura Riley, MD, baby Reilly was born to parents James and Cassandra Melody. James, a local musician, was impressed with the care and compassion he and his wife received at MGH – they had been trying to conceive a child for seven years. He wanted to share his appreciation, and did so by writing the song, “Christmas in Boston,” in which he sings of “Wise men in Cambridge/Angels at Mass General.”
The song has had significant success. It is played on several Boston radio stations during the holiday season and has even received recognition by Mayor Thomas M. Menino. But singing the praises of MGH was not quite enough for Melody. He also decided to donate a portion of the proceeds from his CD sales and a live performance that took place at the Meadowbrook School in Weston, Mass., to Mass General Hospital for Children (MGHfC). Melody raised approximately $1,000 and presented the gift to MGHfC representatives at a ceremony March 13.
“I consider it a privilege to give back to the organization that has given me so much,” he says. The couple’s second child, Ryan, was born at MGH last year.