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‘She’s one of a kind’: Local leaders push for statue of mountain medicine woman

Published: Sep. 2, 2021 at 6:38 PM EDT
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FLOYD COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) - Eula Hall, who died earlier this year at the age of 93, was a pioneer and spokesperson for Appalachian health care and the lack thereof. She founded and ran the Mud Creek Clinic in the small community of Grethel, Ky. in 1973.

The clinic was burnt down in 1983, but was reopened in 1984 and eventually grew to become the Eula Hall Health Center.

Because of her persistence and legacy of bringing healthcare to one of the poorest and most remote areas of the country, she is held in high regard throughout Eastern Kentucky. Following her death, local leaders have begun to push for a statue of the Appalachian medical leader to be placed in the state capital.

“The fact is Eula believed, and I think everyone around here believed, in terms of the capitol and Frankfort, Appalachia is overlooked and women are overlooked,” said local attorney Ned Pillersdorf. “We’ve never had a woman or an Appalachian in the Capitol rotunda and I think she’d be the perfect person.”

Pillersdorf has recently written a resolution for the statue and is one of many pushing to have the statue placed.

“The city council passed a resolution to have her statue put in the rotunda. We hope that it helps,” said Prestonsburg Mayor Les Stapleton. “She deserves it. She did as much for this area in the health field and taking care of people as anybody ever has.”

Pillersdorf said the resolution has passed on to the county level and is expected to pass through the county unanimously.

“As a result of her passing, you know, who’s going to fill her shoes?” said Pillersdorf. “Who will inspire the next generation? She’s really one of a kind.”

Stapleton said Appalachians and Kentuckians can learn a lot from Hall’s persistence in the face of adversity and hopes this statue will inspire women throughout the region.

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